Emergency breakdown

January 2014

View our older posts from The AA Special Operations Response Team (AASORT) and expert meteorologist Matthew Hugo.

We're constantly looking at ways to make sure we’re there when you need us. So, if you haven't already, why not join the AA today

Read our latest blog posts >

 

January blog posts

Friday 31 January 9am

Very unsettled, wet and windy

  • Wet and windy weather spreading eastwards across many areas through Friday with snow on northern hills.
  • Risk of flooding in places given additional large rainfall totals
  • Gales and severe gales developing for northern and western areas of the UK later today into Saturday with a risk of coastal flooding given high tides and the very strong winds.
  • Quite a cold weekend, but somewhat milder by Sunday. Risk of ice overnight into Saturday and with some sleet and snow temporarily to low levels.

Friday

Outbreaks of rain will move across many areas of the UK through the course of Friday bringing a general 10mm to 20mm of rainfall.

Across more western and south-western areas of the UK up to 30mm of rainfall is possible with most of this falling within 6 to 12 hours bringing a risk of flooding to the areas highlighted in the map.

Weather Map

As the rain encounters cold air over Northern England and Scotland a substantial spell of snow is expected during Friday afternoon above 300-400m.  2-5cm or more of snowfall is possible at altitude with higher level routes in the area becoming hazardous for travel.

As the rain clears away to the east this evening an increasingly cold westerly wind heralds the arrival of frequent and increasingly wintry showers. Widespread icy conditions are possible by Saturday morning, especially across Central and Western areas of the UK.

Saturday

Saturday will see frequent and often heavy showers moving eastwards across many areas of the UK but northern and western areas in particular.  Poor travelling and driving conditions are expected quite widely.

A region of cold air moving across the UK during the first half of Saturday is set to combine with the unsettled conditions to bring a risk of sleet and snow across Ireland, Wales, South-west England, Northern England and Scotland for a time on Saturday morning and into the early afternoon.

Some sleet and snow is possible at low levels, but above 250-300m some accumulating snowfall is possible for a time.

Wind speeds will also be of concern across Scotland, Ireland and Northern England in particular (and perhaps north and west Wales) with gusts in excess of 50-60mph possible which may cause some travel disruption.

Strong winds will combine with particularly high tides to bring a risk of coastal flooding in places, especially around Irish coastal areas and throughout Irish Sea in general.

The combination of heavy and frequent wintry showers, icy conditions and very strong winds will lead to significant travel disruption in places.

Sunday

Sunday is set to see a respite from the very unsettled conditions and will be a somewhat milder day with many areas seeing a mix of sunshine and showers. There will be some prolonged drier and brighter intervals in-between the showers, especially across central and southern areas of England.

Unfortunately further wet and windy weather will develop across the far west of the British Isles late in the day.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Wednesday 29 January 9am

Cold Few Days – Wet and Windy by Friday

  • Turning colder from the east and south-east today (Wednesday) with a cold few days ahead.
  • Overnight frost and icy patches expected tonight into Thursday and then possibly overnight into Friday as well.
  • Wet and windy weather returning to end the week bringing a risk of rain, sleet and hill snow.
  • Rather cold, wet and windy weekend currently expected, especially in the north and west.

Colder Weather

The change to colder weather is expected to take place today as east or south-easterly winds gradually develop across many areas of the UK. Further spells of rain and showers are expected at times, but equally in-between some brighter and drier intervals are possible. As the colder air gradually filters further west through the day then there is a risk of some of the rain turning wintry particularly this evening across parts of the Pennines and also perhaps across Wales. Overnight generally drier and clearer conditions will develop and away from southern areas of England in particular a widespread frost is expected along with icy conditions as well. As a result across Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Midlands and Northern England Thursday morning will dawn cold with a risk of ice.

Some rain is expected to move into Ireland during the course of Thursday and some patchy light rain, drizzle and perhaps with some light sleet and snow is expected across parts of England and Wales as well during the day. The best of the conditions will be across Scotland where some bright or sunny spells are to be expected. It is highly likely that Thursday will be the coldest day of the winter so far with temperatures reaching highs between 2C and 4C generally and perhaps remaining near to freezing across rural areas of the north

Wet and Windy Friday

The colder and somewhat drier conditions won’t last as another deep area of low pressure moving in off the Atlantic brings a renewed spell of very inclement conditions. After a cold start outbreaks of rain, already across Ireland and many western areas, will spread eastwards throughout the day with a particularly wet and windy Friday afternoon and evening period expected. As the rain encounters the cold air ahead of it then a spell of snow is expected for the high ground of Northern England and Scotland, especially above 300m. This is something to be aware of as if traveling across high level routes during the second half of Friday then there is the risk of some travel disruption from snow.

Further rainfall through the rest of the week and particularly on Friday will continue to bring the risk of flooding, this was highlighted in Monday’s blog and the graphic associated with that remains relevant for the rest of the week. The general combination of wet and windy conditions will bring quite widespread poor driving and traveling conditions through the day on Friday.

Weekend Preview

For many it is another wet and windy weekend. Saturday in particular looks set to provide a strong or gale force west or south-westerly wind across many northern and western areas of the UK with showers or longer spells of rain, perhaps wintry on hills and showery further south and generally not as windy. Similar conditions for Sunday, but at the moment the winds should begin to ease across northern areas and the longer spells of rain generally become more showery with time as well. Overall quite a cold weekend is currently expected with perhaps an on-going risk of some overnight frost and icy patches as well in places. Full details, as ever, on Friday…

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Monday 27 January 9am

Cold Week Ahead, Unsettled At Times

  • Low pressure dominating first half of the week bringing a risk of showers and longer spells of rain to many areas, wintry on northern hills.
  • Turning colder and drier from the east during Wednesday with a particularly cold day expected on Thursday.
  • Wet and windy weather trying to return to end the week, bringing a risk of rain, sleet and snow.
  • Temperatures around or slightly below average up to mid-week, but more significantly below average from Wednesday onwards.

A new week is upon us and once again low pressure is most certainly the talking point. However, the week ahead will provide the most persistent run of below average temperatures so far this winter. As a result a particularly cold week is expected and especially so after mid-week.

Monday/Tuesday

Both Monday and Tuesday will see low pressure situated right over the UK. This brings a messy scenario in where various weather fronts and other low pressure features are circulating around the main low pressure. As a result the early part of the week is set to bring a widespread risk of showers and longer spells of rain to many areas of the UK. Some drier and brighter intervals will develop at times, but given that low pressure is dominant over the UK then expect to see some rain. Some heavy precipitation may also be in evidence and unfortunately this is most likely across areas which don’t really need it and includes southern and western areas of the UK in general. There is also likely to be a focus for some large rainfall totals over eastern areas of Scotland as well. Precipitation, for most, will be of rain but across higher ground of Scotland and Northern England, above around 300m to 400m then some sleet and snow is possible both during Monday and Tuesday. Also beneath any clearer skies by night then temperatures may drop close to freezing to lead to the risk of some localised icy patches.

Wednesday

Wednesday is expected to bring a change towards colder conditions. As the low pressure declines to the it will combine with higher pressure to the north-east of the UK to introduce a colder and drier east or south-easterly wind. So, Wednesday is currently forecast so see rain and showers move southwest across the UK, possible turning to sleet and snow before it clears. Following on behind to Scotland, Northern England and Eastern areas of England in general will be drier, colder conditions but with perhaps a few wintry showers. Wednesday night into Thursday morning will be particularly cold with a widespread frost and icy patches, so Thursday morning in particular could be very icy.

Thursday/Friday

The end of the week is cold and eventually increasingly unsettled once again. Thursday, with the exception of a few wintry showers in the east, should be mainly dry for most areas with some bright or sunny spells after a cold start and temperatures will struggle to rise much above 2C to 4C across most areas. Another significant frost is then likely to develop on Thursday evening and overnight into Friday with another risk of ice as well into Friday morning. Friday does have some uncertainties for now, but after a cold start low pressure trying to move in from the west may bring an increased risk of rain, sleet and perhaps some snow for a time, but again confidence is quite low regarding the details of the weather on Friday and this will be reviewed through the week.

Rainfall Totals:

Weather Map

Further locally large regional rainfall totals are possible in the coming days, particularly so up to Wednesday before the colder and drier conditions develop. At the moment it is across more southern and some western regions of England and Wales that may see the largest rainfall totals (>25mm to 35mm) and also across Eastern Scotland of which may well see rainfall totals in excess of 50mm here. The areas at greatest risk of the largest rainfall totals and a subsequent risk of localised flooding in the next few days have been highlighted yellow

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Friday 24 January 9am

Very Unsettled, Especially Sunday

  • Early rain in the far east and south-east of England on Saturday clearing away and then many areas seeing a mixture of sunshine and showers, these most frequent across northern and western areas.
  • Deepening depression approaching from the west set to bring a spell of wet and very windy conditions to many areas on Sunday after a chilly start with possible local frost and ice.
  • Temperatures overall around average and feeling quite cold throughout the weekend, particularly so in any wind and rain.

Unsettled and rather cold conditions will dominate throughout the weekend across many areas of the UK. There is a distinct difference between Saturday and Sunday, of which Sunday will provide the most inclement conditions as another deep low pressure approaches from the west and south-west of the UK. Within the short term, today (Friday) wet weather will continue to spread across many areas of the UK through the day but it will take until evening to reach more eastern parts. Here, a cold and increasingly cloudy day is expected, whilst further west of Ireland, Wales and South-west England will see spells of rain and milder temperatures and with a risk of some localised flooding through the day.

Saturday

Saturday see’s a temporary west or south-westerly wind, bring a mixture of sunshine and showers to many areas. Some overnight residual rain may well still be in evidence across the east and south-east of England, but otherwise bright or sunny spells and showers are to be expected. The showers will be most frequent across northern and western areas of the UK and a more significant region of showers is forecast to move across Ireland, Scotland and N England around the middle of the day with perhaps hail and thunder. The showers will also become wintry above 250m to 300m across more northern and western areas of the UK in particular later in the day. A chilly overnight period is then set to follow on Saturday night as winds become somewhat lighter than during the day with a risk of overnight frost and some icy patches, especially across northern and eastern areas of the UK.

Sunday

Into Sunday and a significant low pressure is forecast to become located just to the west or north-west of Ireland and will be the dominant feature of the weather throughout the day. Whilst starting dry and cold across some northern and eastern areas outbreaks of heavy rain with strong winds in the west will then sweep across many areas throughout the day. Some particularly heavy rain is possible at times and the rain may also turn to sleet and snow on hills above 300m from Northern England northwards in particular. The other noteworthy feature will be the strength of the wind. Many areas of the UK are at risk of strong winds, but with a significant risk of gales or even severe gales developing across Scotland and particularly across Ireland through the day with wind gusts over 60mph to 70mph possible. So, in summary a particularly inclement day on Sunday with heavy rain and strong winds finally giving way to blustery showers, but it will provide some particularly poor driving and travelling conditions.

Rainfall Totals:

Weather Map

Rainfall totals will be on the increase over the weekend, primarily due to rainfall through today (Friday) and then also from the combination of heavy showers on Saturday and the more prolonged rain on Sunday. Many northern and western areas of the UK are at risk of up to 20mm to 30mm between Friday and Sunday. However, western areas of Scotland, Ireland, NW England, Wales and SW England are at risk of over 40mm, perhaps locally 50mm by the end of the weekend. This will bring a risk of flooding and I have highlighted the areas at risk of the greatest of the largest rainfall totals on the associated image

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Wednesday 22 January 10am

Cold and Showery then Wet and Windy

  • Changeable weather continues through the rest of the week with cold and showery weather on Thursday giving way to milder, wetter and windier conditions on Friday.
  • Renewed risk of some localised flooding across western areas of the UK in association with frontal rain during Friday.
  • Quite a cold end to the week, but milder in the west, briefly, during Friday.
  • Remaining very unsettled into the weekend at the moment; Cold and showery on Saturday, wet and very windy on Sunday.

The relentless unsettled conditions are set to continue and this will maintain a changeable outlook through the remainder of the week. Today sees frontal rain across eastern areas of the UK slowly clearing away and then many areas experiencing a mixture of bright or sunny spells and some scattered showers, these most prevalent across western areas of the UK. Temperatures will fall away across some northern and western parts of the UK in particular through this coming night with some icy patches in places, particularly across Scotland and Northern Ireland, but overall temperatures should generally remain high enough to limit the risk of ice.

Thursday

Into Thursday and we enter into a brief period of colder weather. A weather front is forecast to quickly move down from the north-west across many areas and this will provide a region of organised shower activity or perhaps longer spells of rain. Initially this will be across Scotland and Ireland during the morning, but will quickly move into most areas of England and Wales by late morning before clearing away to the east. Behind this feature colder air will quickly dig in and could turn the rain to sleet and snow on the back edge as the system clears from around Northern England northwards and especially above 200m. Following on behind will be a cold and showery north-westerly air flow, so the remainder of the day sees a mixture of sunshine and showers, these wintry across northern and western hills above around 200m with some accumulations possible across Scotland.

A cold night to follow on Thursday night, away from Ireland and there is then, as a result, a more widespread risk of frost and icy patches on Friday morning.

Friday

The working week comes to a close with an area of low pressure dominant bringing outbreaks of frontal rain across many areas, but it may take until later in the day to reach eastern parts of the UK. Some heavy precipitation is possible with this frontal system and a general 10mm to 20mm of rain is expected quite widely across western areas of the UK. This may bring a risk of localised flooding, perhaps across parts of SW Scotland, Wales and also down into SW England where river levels remain quite high. So, a wet and windy day is expected for most.

The Weekend

Early indications for the weekend are almost for a repeat performance of Thursday and Friday. Saturday will provide a brief window of colder and showery conditions with perhaps some wintry showers on higher ground in the north and west. However, by Sunday another deep low pressure, situated to the north-west of the UK will introduce further wet and very windy weather across many areas for a time during the day before a colder and showery spell of weather returns by late Sunday. Clearly further rainfall over the weekend will only continue to increase the risk of localised flooding and additional large rainfall totals are possible on Sunday in particular and this will be monitored with further information, as usual, to be issued on Friday.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Monday 20 January 9am

A mixed week ahead

  • Mainly dry and chilly start to the week with some overnight frost, fog and ice patches
  • A mix of conditions through the rest of the week with some rain or showers developing at times, but also some drier and brighter conditions
  • Temperatures generally near average so feeling quite cold at times with frost and ice patches possible under clear skies

The coming week will provide a mixture of conditions with drier and brighter weather interspersed with rain and showers at times.

Monday

The week will start mainly dry with some bright or sunny spells today across most areas. Mist and fog patches are expected in places through the morning and these will bring locally poor driving conditions and in some cases may linger all day. This is most likely through the East Midlands and up towards the Vale of York.

With road surface temperatures at or below freezing then some icy patches are possible this morning.

A few scattered showers are expected across more western and south-western areas of the UK but overall a fine and settled day for many.

Tuesday

Clearing skies on Monday night and into Tuesday will bring the opportunity for fog to re-develop across central and eastern areas of England in particular. By Tuesday morning fog could be quite widespread and dense, more-so than on Monday so take care if travelling early on Tueday morning.

With surface temperatures near or below freezing, icy patches are possible too, particularly where there is continued surface run-off from fields, for example, given the heavy rainfall of late.

A change is expected from the west through the day as a weather front moves into western areas and then very slowly tracks east. This is set to bring outbreaks of rain and strengthening wind, with the rain possibly turning to sleet and snow above 400m from Northern England northwards for a time.

Mid-week

Mid-week will be dominated by low pressure and a rather cold west or north-westerly wind bringing a risk of showers and perhaps some longer spells of rain at times through Wednesday and Thursday.

There will be drier and brighter intervals between the showers, and frost and icy patches will continue to be a problem overnight wherever cloud breaks occur across England and Wales in particular. There is also a risk of Fog by Friday morning as winds fall.

Friday is set to turn increasingly mild, wet and windy across many northern and western areas of the UK with drier, sunnier and colder conditions expected to persist across southern and south-eastern areas.

Rainfall

Most of the heaviest rainfall over the coming week is expected to be across northern and western areas of the UK (Scotland, Ireland and Northern England) where up to 40mm of rainfall is expected between Monday and Friday in places.

The areas that have experienced flooding across more southern areas of the UK are likely to see some rainfall at times, but overall no significant rainfall totals are expected so the risk of further flooding is minimal and water levels should continue to fall slowly this week.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Friday 17 January 10pm

Soggy South East

Workload Map

Recent rain falling on already saturated catchments has lead to lots of water on the roads of the South East. This has meant an unexpectedly high workload day in quite a small geographic area.

  • The flooding has affected principally Essex and the area around Crawley, Horsham and East Grinstead
  • Again today we have seen motorist drive around, or even move, road closure signs. Invariably then need the help of others after being caught out.
  • We appreciate that the closure of roads can be an inconvenience and can lead to long detours, but they are there for very good reason.
  • 32% of flood related deaths are by drowning in a vehicle. Motorists have a real tendency to underestimate the power of flood water or over estimate the capabilities of their vehicle/driving ability. Sadly this can have devastating consequences.
  • Flood water is very dangerous and there are numerous reasons to stay out, either in your car or on foot.
  • If faced with a flooded road we urge motorists to Think! Don’t Sink!

Ian, your man on Twitter @AASORT

Friday 17 January 9am

Remaining Unsettled – Showers or Spells of Rain

  • Low pressure continues to dominate the weather across many areas throughout the weekend bringing a mixture of showers and longer spells of rain at times.
  • There is a continued risk of some heavy precipitation at times which may well maintain the risk of flooding in places.
  • Overnight patches of fog, frost and ice are possible beneath any clearer skies in what will generally be quite a cold weekend.

The coming weekend will see a maintenance of the unsettled conditions with many areas at risk of some rain or showers at times, some of which could be heavy and with an on-going risk of some localised flooding, especially across areas of the SE & SW that continue to experience saturated surfaces.

Saturday

Saturday is going to be quite a ‘messy’ day as longer spells of rain or showers are forecast to move northwards across many areas through the day, but with western areas of the UK being at risk of some of the heaviest showers and more persistent rain. In-between any showers some drier and brighter intervals are expected and at the moment these are most likely across parts of south-east England during the afternoon period.

Overnight into Sunday and further showers and longer spells of rain are expected at times, with focus on Ireland, Scotland and Eastern England at the moment. In-between across parts of NW England, Wales, Midlands and South-west England some clearer spells may well lead to a local risk of frost, icy patches and some fog as well. Where any fog does develop it will be slow to clear the following morning and will provide particularly hazardous conditions for driving.

Sunday

Into Sunday and little change is expected, with a continued risk of showers or longer spells of rain. At the moment the greatest risk is expected across Ireland, Wales, SW England, W England and also perhaps across parts of N and E Scotland. In-between and as with Saturday some drier and brighter conditions are expected, at the moment particularly across parts of N England and down into the Midlands, but local fog patches may well linger all day in places. A similar scene then continues overnight on Sunday night and into the start of the new working week. Some areas will maintain a risk of showers and longer spells of rain, but as wind speeds drop away it will give another opportunity for fog, freezing fog, frost and some icy patches to develop. This is not a widespread risk, but the risk is there regionally and clearly where any of these conditions do develop then a particularly poor set of driving conditions are to be expected by Monday morning

Rainfall Totals:

Weather Map

Many areas of the UK are at risk of some rain or showers this weekend, but at the moment, given latest guidance, it is across more south-western and western areas of the UK that are at greatest risk of the largest rainfall totals and hence the greatest risk of flooding. This risk may also extend to parts of E Scotland and this has been highlighted on the associated graphic as well, but there is some uncertainty over this. The areas highlighted are at risk of a general 25mm to 35mm of rainfall over the weekend, but with locally higher totals of 40mm to 50mm, particularly where localised heavy showers and downpours occur at times.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Wednesday 15 January 12pm

Sunshine and Showers

  • Low pressure is expected to remain dominant throughout the rest of the week but rather than bringing more persistent rain is expected to bring sunshine and showers.
  • Temperatures a little cooler than the mid-week period, but overall still near or perhaps slightly above average.
  • Early thoughts for the weekend are for further unsettled conditions with perhaps unwanted longer spells of rain for parts of England and Wales on Saturday.

The unsettled conditions are here to stay. The mid-week period has produced generally milder conditions and many areas are experiencing temperatures above average today with temperatures perhaps reaching 13C this afternoon. A cold front moving across the country through the remainder of the day will provide further longer spells of rain or showers at times across many areas.

Into Thursday and Friday, low pressure is set to maintain the unsettled conditions across all areas, but unlike today for example the end of the week is expected to produce a mixture of sunshine and showers, so a respite for the more persistent spells of rain is expected. That being said both Thursday and Friday will provide the opportunity for some locally heavy and perhaps thundery downpours across southern and western areas of the UK in particular. Whilst some showers are possible, it is across more central and eastern areas of the UK that the driest and brightest conditions will be experienced.

Temperatures are expected to be near or slightly above average with highs ranging between 6C and 10C generally, though perhaps a degree or two cooler in the north. As the low pressure potentially moves into the UK during the end of the week and winds fall light across Scotland and Ireland it is here that some overnight frost and icy patches may develop at times as well. Clearly this will be dependent on cloud breaks by night, but the risk of some icy patches is greatest across more northern and western areas of the UK through the end of the week.

The weekend is looking unsettled and Saturday is currently expected to produce a more organised area of rain moving north and east across parts of England and Wales. This could well bring a more significant region of rainfall to areas that really don’t need it. Into Sunday and it’s back to a mixture of sunshine and showers but with light winds through the weekend, overnight mist, fog, frost and icy patches may well become an issue.

As ever full details on the weekend later in the week.....

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Monday 13 January 9am

Unsettled – Further Rain and Showers

  • Low pressure remains the dominant feature of the weather through the week bringing a continued risk of showers and longer spells of rain, but without the stormy conditions of recent weeks.
  • Risk of some overnight frost and icy patches, along with some wintry precipitation across higher ground of northern areas of the UK at times.
  • Temperatures generally near average through the week, though mid-week providing a temporary spell of mild conditions, especially for England and Wales.

It’s a familiar story through this coming week with low pressure always influential in some shape or form. As a result the unsettled theme is forecast to continue throughout the coming week with many areas of the UK at risk of further showers or longer spells of rain. It is prudent to highlight though that the week ahead will not produce the severe conditions of recent weeks.

Monday

So, the week starts showery. Many areas of the UK are expected to see a mixture of sunshine and showers through the remainder of today, with a more organized zone of showers moving generally west to east across the UK through the day. Some localised downpours are possible at times along with hail and a rumble of thunder. Given relatively cold temperatures then some sleet and snow is also possible on higher ground of Northern England and Scotland and particularly so above around 300m. As we move into Monday evening and overnight into Tuesday many areas will see a window of drier conditions develop and by Tuesday morning many areas of the UK, away from the south-east, will have temperatures near to or below freezing. As a result there is quite a widespread risk of icy patches across many areas of Ireland, Scotland, Northern England, Wales, Midlands and South-west England by Tuesday morning!

Tuesday

Into Tuesday eastern areas of the UK will remain driest for longest with some bright or sunny spells, but outbreaks of rain into Ireland early in the day will generally dominate across many areas with time. Also of some interest is the interaction of the weather front with quite cold air ahead of it. For Northern England and Scotland there is a risk of a spell of sleet and snow above 300m to 400m in particular for a time into Tuesday afternoon. Some accumulations are possible and this may bring some temporary travel disruption across higher level routes on Tuesday afternoon and evening.

latter half of the week

The mid-week period is then dominated by low pressure and with frontal systems crossing the UK. Further showers and longer spells of rain are then expected nationwide with some further spells of heavy precipitation at times which will maintain the risk of flooding in places, particularly across areas that remain extremely saturated. Thursday and Friday combined look as though they will produce further unsettled conditions but in the form of showers rather than more organized spells of rain at the moment as low pressure becomes dominant over the UK. So a rather showery end to the week is currently expected, some of which may be heavy with hail and thunder. With lighter winds developing later in the week there is then potentially a renewed risk of some overnight frost and icy patches as well.

Rainfall Totals

Weather Map

With low pressure dominating this week any further rainfall totals are unwelcomed, but at the moment it is expected to be across more southern and western areas of the UK that see the largest rainfall totals and I have highlighted which areas of the UK are at greatest risk of seeing up to and over 30mm to 40mm between Monday and Friday. Clearly this may well aid to renew the risk of flooding in places, especially across those areas where flood waters remain particularly high and have not subsided much in recent days. In contrast eastern areas of the UK will experience the lowest rainfall totals through the week with some parts of East and Northeast England for example experiencing no more than around 5mm to 15mm.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Friday 10 January 10am

Weekend of Two Halves

  • Mainly dry for many areas on Saturday after a chilly start with some bright or sunny spells and quickly turning cold and frosty for many on Saturday evening.
  • Coldest night for many areas in some time overnight into Sunday morning with widespread frost and icy patches. Fog patches possible as well.
  • Turning wetter and windier from the west during Sunday, but generally remaining dry throughout the day in the east.

Saturday

The coming weekend will generally provide a window of better weather for many areas. A ridge of high pressure is set to develop and build into the UK overnight on Friday and into Saturday with many areas experiencing a dry day on Saturday with bright or sunny spells. A chilly start is expected with a widespread frost across many northern and western areas of the UK, some fog patches are possible as well and where these do develop could well be very slow to clear. A scattering of wintry showers are possible across Scotland during Saturday, but even here these should gradually die away during the second half of the day.

Saturday evening and Saturday night will produce one of the coldest overnight periods in some time, given just how unsettled the weather has been. With clear skies and light winds temperatures are set to drop quickly on Saturday evening and perhaps with the exception of Ireland and the far south-west of England many inland areas of the UK will experience near or sub zero temperatures by Sunday morning. Clearly this will provide a widespread frost and the risk of ice. Given just how saturated surfaces area given recent heavy rainfall then ice may well be a widespread risk by Sunday morning, particularly on untreated surfaces so this is something to be aware of if travelling early on Sunday morning. Again there is likely to be some fog patches as well. These will be localised so hard to pin-point specifically where they will develop, but where they do they could be slow to clear.

Sunday

As we move into Sunday low pressure and another weather front moves into western areas. This is set to bring an increasingly wet and windy day to Ireland, SW England, and Wales and later in the day many western areas of England and Scotland. Eastern England is likely to maintain a dry and bright day throughout on Sunday. A developing fresh or strong south or south-easterly wind on Sunday is also likely to make it feel quite cold, particularly after the cold and frosty start temperatures will take some time to recover through the day.

So not a bad a weekend for many, yes more rain does develop from the west later on Sunday, but at least the majority of the weekend will provide a window of drier, colder and rather crisp conditions, but watch out for patchy fog, frost and icy stretches at times, especially on Sunday morning.

Next Week

The outlook for next week is generally unsettled at the moment, but there is considerable uncertainty over the details. The earlier signal for a more significant cold spell has now decreased; as a result cold or perhaps very cold east or south-easterly winds are distinctly unlikely now, perhaps with the exception of the far north-east of Scotland. As usual full details on next week will be issued first thing Monday morning.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Wednesday 8 January 10am

Further Heavy Rain, then Colder and Drier

  • Outbreaks of moderate and heavy rain moving north and east across parts of England and Wales today (Wednesday) bringing a renewed risk of flooding
  • Rain perhaps turning to snow above 250m to 300m in particular across S Scotland and N England overnight into Thursday, possible cause for concern across higher level routes.
  • Drier for many on Thursday, some rain and showers returning on Friday but gradually becoming colder and drier to end the week and start the weekend.

Wednesday

Weather Map

The discussed low pressure system for the mid-week period has changed track and is now expected to develop more today which, as a result, will take it on a more northerly track. Outbreaks of moderate and heavy rain will move across most areas of England and Wales later today (Wednesday) and overnight into Thursday. Parts of the south and south-east of England are now at a lower risk of disruptive rainfall totals, despite some precipitation at times. Focus for the heaviest and most persistent rainfall is expected across; SW England, Wales, Midlands and up into N England. Across these areas a general 15mm to 25mm of rainfall is expected widely within the next 24 hours or so and perhaps with local totals up to 30mm to 40mm. I have highlighted, on the associated graphic, which areas are at greatest risk of seeing the largest rainfall totals and hence the subsequent risk of some localised flooding in places;

The other noteworthy possibility with this event is the development of some snow across higher ground of S Scotland and N England overnight into Thursday. At the moment parts of Yorkshire, Lancashire, Cumbria and the Southern Uplands are at risk of seeing the rain turning to sleet and snow, especially above 250m to 300m. As a result there is a risk of some settling snowfall across the higher level routes within these areas. Some potentially gusty winds may also develop for a time across N England as the low pressure clears away to the east during Thursday morning.

The rest of the week

Thursday, thereafter, is expected to be a mainly dry day as ridge of high pressure builds into the UK from the west. So once the low pressure clears away east then apart from a few showers Thursday is set fair with some bright or sunny spells. A chilly overnight period is then possible into Friday morning for central, northern and eastern areas with perhaps some frost and localised icy patches

The week is set to end with a relatively weak weather front moving into the UK from the west. This will bring some rain and showers to more northern and western areas of the UK on Friday, whilst the south and south-east generally remain mainly dry with some bright or sunny spells. The primary importance of this weather front will be that it will introduce a much colder air mass across the UK overnight on Friday and into Saturday, particularly compared to what the UK has experienced so far this winter. Wintry showers are possible across northern and western areas to end Friday and overnight Friday and into Saturday a widespread frost is currently expected with some icy patches

Colder Weather Next Week

Latest weather models and guidance are beginning to become better organised around the potential development of a blocking area of high pressure to the north and north-east of the UK. This would introduce quite a significant change in the weather compared with so far this winter. East or south-easterly winds may well develop and bring about a significant drop in temperature with much colder conditions developing. This remains a finely balanced situation and time is of significant importance here to gauge whether these early signs will develop. However, potentially be prepared for a significant change in conditions through next week, with potentially markedly colder weather on the way.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Tuesday 7 January 1pm

Please Think, Don't Sink!

flooded car photo

  • The AA’s flood rescue team, AA Special Operations, has attended more than 70 flood-related call-outs so far today, bringing the AA’s total to over 1,900 since 23 December
  • Don’t take any chances driving down a flooded road. Not only do you risk wrecking your car but it can swamp adjacent property too. Even if it’s not too deep, the bow waves from passing cars can often mean the difference between water lapping at someone’s front door and actually spilling into their home
  • Flood water can be very destructive, chewing up the road surface, and there will be other hazards including silt, debris, dislodged manhole covers and drains. Drive carefully and keep your speed down.
  • The AA Advice is if it is flowing or more than 10cm deep then stay out of floodwater.
  • Please be especially careful at night when flooded roads can be difficult to spot and it is impossible to judge the depth of water.
  • With more flooding forecast as more rain falls on saturated catchments we urge the public to stay out of floodwater.

Ian, your man on Twitter @AASORT

Monday 6 January 10am

Generally Unsettled, but Less So than of Late

  • The coming week will maintain predominantly unsettled conditions and particularly so during the start of the week.
  • Conditions as the week progresses, whilst unsettled, will generally be less so than of late and with the risk of any severe weather becoming much lower with time.
  • Generally quite a mild week, especially up to mid-week, cooler late in the week but with little risk of any wintry conditions this week.

Low pressure is set to remain the dominant feature of the weather through this coming week and maintain the unsettled theme that has dominated now for over a month

Start of the week

A mixture of sunshine and blustery showers across many areas throughout Monday and also into Tuesday. The showers will be most frequent across northern and western areas of the UK in particular and it is here that winds will be strongest as well. Winds gusting up to 60mph to 70mph are possible in places and as with last week these will combine with quite high tides to produce a risk of some coastal flooding, but not to the same extent as last week.

Wednesday

During late Tuesday and into Wednesday attention is drawn towards the south-west of the UK as a developing area of low pressure moves up north-eastwards across a large portion of England and Wales during the second half of Wednesday. Away from these areas, across Scotland and Ireland, a mixture of sunshine and showers will continue but noticeably by Wednesday winds will be much lighter across many areas. Breezy conditions are still expected, but no severe winds are forecast by this time.

Weather Map

This area of low pressure is currently expected to bring a risk of 15mm to 25mm quite widely across parts of England and Wales but perhaps with locally higher totals (>30mm) across Wales and the Midlands in particular. I have highlighted on the associated graphic which areas may experience over an inch of additional rainfall on Wednesday in yellow and clearly this will maintain the risk of localised flooding given just how saturated surface conditions areas;

End of the week

As we progress towards the end of the week then Wednesdays low pressure clears away and many areas are then back into a mixture of sunshine and showers in association with a west or north-westerly wind. A somewhat cooler spell of weather than compared with earlier in the week can be expected. Some of the showers may locally be heavy but equally some prolonged drier and brighter intervals are possible in-between as well. There’s some uncertainty over Friday at the moment, but a further risk of showers across Scotland and Ireland, whilst England and Wales generally become mainly dry.

In Summary

So, overall an improving picture through the week really. Some particularly wet and windy weather is expected to start the week and Wednesday’s low tracking across England and Wales needs watching in terms of further additional rainfall totals. But overall, as the week progresses far less severe conditions than of late are expected to develop and at the moment the medium and longer term generally looks somewhat colder than of late and with a much lower risk of the deep lows that dominated through December.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

Thursday 2 January 5.30pm

Severe Flood Warnings

waves photo

  • There are real concerns about flooding in the next few days, specifically the early hours of Friday morning.
  • Gale force winds will combine with spring tides to bring significant coastal flooding risks to the South and West of the UK.
  • The Environment Agency have issued SEVERE flood warnings- their highest flood warning level, reserved for when there is a danger to life.
  • The High tides in the SW will peak before sunrise – we urge those at risk to take action now to protect themselves and their property
  • Beaches, coastal promenades, roads and footpaths will be extremely dangerous. The public are advised to avoid these areas.
  • The AA SORT crews, trained in flood rescue have busy right through the Christmas Period and will be on hand again tomorrow. Please do not drive through floodwater!
  • Please stay flood aware overnight as more warnings will certainly be put on; Check the Environment Agency and SEPA pages and stay tuned to local radio and social media for the latest in your area.

Please take time to be flood aware this evening and make the necessary preparations. Stay safe everyone.

Ian, your man on Twitter @AASORT

Thursday 2 January 2pm

Washed-out Christmas

flooded car photo

  • The Christmas period of 23rd December to 1st January saw an unprecedented volume of flood related workload here at the AA.
  • In that period we were called to 357 vehicles stuck in floodwaters and 1,089 called in as “flood water driven through”.
  • We had a disproportionate number of 4x4’s amongst the 1,446 calls as motorists either overestimated the capabilities of their vehicle or underestimated the depth of waters.
  • The AA Advice is if it is flowing or more than 10cm deep then stay out of floodwater.
  • 75% of insurance claims for flood damage lead to a write-off
  • 32% of flood related deaths are by drowning in a vehicle.
  • With more flooding forecast we urge the public to stay out of floodwater.

Ian, your man on Twitter @AASORT

Thursday 1 January 10am

Remaining Very Unsettled

  • Further spells of wet and very windy weather are expected through the rest of the week and into the first weekend of the New Year.
  • Continued risk of localised flooding in the days ahead due to heavy rainfall but also due to some sea defenses being breached given combination of strong winds and high tides.
  • Colder and showery into the start of the coming weekend, but soon becoming wet, windy and milder by Sunday.

The unsettled weather is set to continue and whilst Thursday will provide a window of better weather another developing area of low pressure, of which is expected to have a central pressure near 943mb by midnight tonight, will introduce yet another spell of wet and very windy weather for many during Friday

Friday

Weather Map

A region of heavy rain with squally winds is forecast to move across many areas overnight and into the early hours of Friday bringing further rainfall accumulations. The rain will move through quite quickly but this will be followed by sunshine and blustery showers across many areas during Friday itself. A weather front will remain quite stubborn and slow moving across Northern Ireland and Western Scotland and here longer spells of more persistent rainfall is to be expected.

The other notable feature of the weather is expected to be a gale or perhaps severe gale force west or south-westerly wind across many western areas of the UK in particular. Winds gusting up to 50mph to 60mph are expected, with perhaps locally higher gusts, throughout many regions surrounding the Irish Sea for example. The strength of the wind is forecast to combine with some particularly high tides through Friday to bring the risk of some coastal flooding given that some particularly high tides are possible. I have highlighted which areas of the UK are at risk of the strong winds on Friday and also it is across these areas that coastal regions may see some flooding

Saturday

As we move into the coming weekend most areas are expected to see a mixture of sunshine and blustery showers, these heaviest and most frequent across northern and western areas of the UK. There is a risk of some of the showers turning wintry with sleet and snow possible above 300m to 400m in particular. There is also the risk of a more organised spell of rain quickly moving across central and southern areas of England through the day. There remains some uncertainty over this, but potentially expect a spell of more organised rain here for a time on Saturday.

Sunday

As we then move into Sunday we will once again see a return to wet and very windy conditions across many areas as a large zone of persistent and often heavy rain moves north and eastwards across many areas along with gales; quite a stormy end to the weekend is currently expected.

The continued threat of further rainfall in the coming days will bring the risk of further flooding to some areas. Between today (Thursday) and Sunday (5th) some areas of the UK may well receive another 50mm to 60mm. Areas are at greatest risk are highlighted within the earlier graphic. Temperatures over the weekend are forecast to be quite depressed on Saturday with highs ranging between 4C and 8C generally and overnight into Sunday may well provide an opportunity for some frost and icy patches as road temperatures fall to near freezing, so this is something to be aware of early on Sunday. However, as Sunday progresses temperatures will soon rise with a mild end to the weekend. It may still feel cold though given the wind and rain.

Matt Hugo, Meteorologist

December 2013 posts >
November 2013 posts >
October 2013 posts >
September 2013 posts >
August 2013 posts >
July 2013 posts >
June 2013 posts >
May 2013 posts >
April 2013 posts >
March 2013 posts >
February 2013 posts >
January 2013 posts >
December 2012 posts >

 

 

Breakdown cover

The AA's cover is recommended by readers of 'Which?' magazine

Get breakdown cover
Cover for breakdowns