Met Office issues new ice warning in UK

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for ice across the South – with a mix of snow and sleet forecast for some parts…reports Asian Lite News

The Met Office warned of ice patches on untreated roads and pavements, wintry showers and “temperatures near zero”.

Some areas – such as the North Downs in Sussex – could see 1-3cm of snow, and pictures on Monday morning showed a dusting of snow in some parts of Kent. An amber alert for cold weather has also been issued by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).

It covers the North West of England, West Midlands, East Midlands and South West of England until noon on Friday.

The warning means “cold weather impacts are likely to be felt across the whole health service for an extended period of time”.

Dr Agostinho Sousa, from the UKHSA, said it was important to check on those “most vulnerable to the cold” over the next week. Anyone with pre-existing medical conditions, or over 65, is advised to be especially cautious and “heat the rooms where you spend most of your time”.

It comes as many people are still struggling to recover from Storm Henk, which last week caused widespread flooding and two deaths.

Some 148 flood warnings (meaning flooding is expected) and 146 flood alerts (flooding possible) were in place in England and Wales on Monday morning. Debbie Carling, who lives in a cottage by the Thames in Chertsey, told Sky News she’s increasingly worried about flooding.

She’s lived in the town for 17 years and said three out of four instances of heavy flooding had happened in the last two years. Debbie Carling, who lives nears the Thames, has spent her own money to install a flood water pump at her property. The system has been pumping non-stop for over a week, she said. “We’re at the top level now and we need it to start to recede quite quickly,” she added. “We’ve already put a lot of things into storage over the last few days.”

On Sunday, Labour accused the government of being “asleep at the wheel” over flood warnings.

Party leader Sir Keir Starmer vowed to make flood defences “fit for purpose”, writing on social media that “people’s lives shouldn’t be upended by extreme rain”.

But Rishi Sunak defended the government’s record on flood protection, saying 49,000 people had avoided potential ruin.

“We have over 1,000 Environment Agency personnel on the ground in local communities helping, over 200 pumps have been deployed,” he said. “We’ve invested £5.2bn in flood defences over the period in question, that’s a record sum, far more than we’ve done (previously), in the future that’s contributed to protecting over 300,000 homes.”

It followed the announcement of a new government financial package for eligible areas of the UK that have faced exceptional localised flooding.

Meanwhile, the EA said “significant” floods were expected to continue on parts of the lower River Trent on Monday with minor impacts expected there and along the Thames and Severn until Wednesday.

Minor groundwater flooding is expected across parts of Dorset, Wiltshire and Hampshire and could hit other parts of the south as well as Yorkshire.

Stephen Dixon, a Met Office spokesperson, said the sudden change in conditions was due to cold air from the north and east replacing wet westerly air.

Clear conditions and some sunny spells are expected, while 1-2cm of snow could fall on higher ground such as Dartmoor. Dixon said: “It is a cold regime and that theme continues for much of the week. Temperatures through the week will remain below average for this time of year. If you do have to travel in icy conditions plan your route, check for delays and road closures. If you are driving … look out for potential hazards and keep your speed down. Using a higher gear may be more appropriate.”

Tuesday night could be even colder with temperatures potentially dropping to -9C in the Scottish Highlands, while daytime temperatures are not expected to top 6C in the south and 8C in the north.

An amber cold health alert (CHA) for the north-west of England, the Midlands, the south-west of England and the south-east of England is also in place until noon on Friday.

The amber alert, issued by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), means “cold weather impacts are likely to be felt across the whole health service for an extended period of time”.

There is also a yellow cold health alert in place for the north-east of England, Yorkshire and the Humber, the east of England and London.

Cold weather can raise the risk of heart attacks, strokes and chest infections, and is particularly dangerous for older people and those with underlying health conditions.

Dr Agostinho Sousa, the head of extreme events and health protection at UKHSA, said: “With the Met Office forecasting drops in temperature across the United Kingdom into next week, it is important to check in on the wellbeing of those most vulnerable to the cold.”

The EA said about 2,000 properties had flooded.

ALSO READ-Delhi’s double trouble: Chilling cold and poor air quality


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *