U.K. sees a freezing year end with snow and ice warnings

Published on : Friday, January 1, 2021

U.K. residents woke up to freezing New Year’s Eve after experiencing heavy snow fall towards the end of the year. Almost five inches of snow blanketed the town of Horwich in Greater Manchester overnight on December 30 with forecasters warning of more snowfalls, showers and strong winds over the next few days. Temperatures were as low as -7.5C during the night, making the last day one of the coldest in the year.

According to the Met Office, the mercury can hit nearly -12C in Scotland with snow and ice warnings in place across several parts of the U.K. including Northern Ireland, most of Scotland and northern England. There was also a warning for ice in force for parts of south-western and south-eastern England until 11AM on New Year’s Eve. The forecaster mentioned that the last of the day of 2020 came along with the risk of rain, sleet and snow, another feature sliding down the country from northern Scotland.

Met Office meteorologist Ollie Claydon mentioned that the weather was particularly cold in Scotland with expected readings of -12C. It was also forecasted that Hogmanay and New Year’s Day is likely to see -10C in the countryside, especially where snow is lying on the ground. Towns and cities might drop below zero, with -4C expected in Glasgow on New Year’s Day.

According to reports, the mercury is likely to fall further on Saturday night, when -12C is expected in the countryside again. Public Health England has issued a “severe weather action” health alert for parts of the U.K. in preparation for more snow. There is also a flood risk for more than 100 areas in the country, with the Environment Agency issuing 31 flood warnings and 70 alerts across England. 

The long-range forecast of the Met Office until January 27 expects cold or rather cold conditions that are likely to continue into the period, with associated wintry hazards. It was mentioned that through the second half of the month the chance of colder than average conditions remain most likely, although occasional milder spells are possible.

Reports say that there is even potential for unsettled conditions to develop across the south bringing above average precipitation, although the risk of wintry hazards would persist nationwide. Vulnerable and elderly people have been urged to take care during this period as cold weather continues across the U.K. Britain is set to be plunged into a deep freeze throughout January with no prospect of a thaw on the horizon, according to forecasters.

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