A mini-heatwave has hit the UK in recent days – but all good things come to pass as lightning and storms are due to batter parts of the country as two pressure systems collide. Temperatures exceeded 30C in the south of England and Wales on Tuesday – but the coming days will bring cooler temperatures and some thunderstorms, with the potential for lightning strikes across huge swathes of the UK.
The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for thunderstorms over south west England and souther Wales starting at 11am today.
The warning reads: “An area of showers will move northwards across southwest England and south Wales on Wednesday.
“Whilst many areas will see little rainfall there is the chance of some heavy and thundery downpours developing, particularly late in the afternoon.
“Where these occur 30 to 50mm of rain could fall in less than three hours though only a few spots would likely see these totals.
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“Lightning may also be a hazard during the day.”
The warning covers major cities such as Cardiff, Swansea, and Plymouth.
Maps show a low pressure front moving in from the south west over the course of today, bringing showers and potentially lightning across these areas.
The Met Office says the likelihood of lightning and thunderstorms will move northwards across southwest England and south Wales on Wednesday, while much of the rest of the country remains dry.
However, on Thursday a further two yellow warnings have been issued for the whole of Wales, the north of England and Scotland, as well as the second for Northern Ireland.
The warning, which comes into place at 11am tomorrow and ends at 8pm, covers England from the Scottish border down to Birmingham and South Wales and across to the south west.
All of Northern Ireland is included in the second warning.
The Met Office predicts more intense showers and thunderstorms to break out over the course of Thursday, with surface-level flooding likely in these areas.
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The warnings urge residents and businesses in the affected areas to prepare for travel chaos, and the potential for flooding and lightning strikes.
Jim Dale, a forecaster at British Weather Services, said mini-tornadoes could be on the cards for some Brits this week.
He said: ”There will be thunderstorms from Wednesday and Thursday this week.
“From Thursday, the scattered thunderstorms are likely to become more widespread in England and Wales.
“Low pressure from the south will push the high ridge of hot air away by the end of the week, which could cause flash flooding, hail, storms and even mini-tornados if you’re really unlucky.
“So people should be prepared if they are planning to walk in the park with a t-shirt on.”
The forecaster also said this type of stormy weather was unusual for this time of year.
He added: ”This is not our normal latitude for this time of year as we do not normally get this sort of heat in September. This is definitely unusual.”
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