A powerful cyclonic weather system will tear in from the Atlantic today carried on a super-charged jet stream, forecasters say. Wind and hefty downpours will sweep much of the country through the coming days as northerly winds bring cooler temperatures.
Met Office spokesman Grahame Madge said: “It is a very unsettled picture with another low-pressure system set to come through which will deepen towards the weekend.
“The centre of this low will be quite deep and will be sufficient to cause inland gales and severe gales around the coasts.
“It will bring widespread rain which will move in bands across the country.”
While there will be some sunshine around today, heavy rain will dominate the weather through the following days, he warned.
He said: “Some quite tight isobars around this low will bring some very strong winds during Friday and there are reasonably strong winds also likely on Saturday.
“Showers will be heavy on Sunday and again the winds are expected to be pretty strong with inland gales and the potential for severe gales across coastal regions.
“The greatest risk from the winds will be on Friday and Saturday, on Sunday we are looking at quite intense and heavy showers.”
The dire weather will be driven by the jet stream which has entered a so-called ‘zonal’ phase ideal for steering storms in from the Atlantic.
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The jet stream often weaves and bends to the north of the UK at this time of year allowing high pressure to block low-pressure systems from reaching Britain.
The zonal, or straight, phase means it acts like a conveyor belt ferrying unstable weather systems in towards the west coast.
Mr Madge said: “The jet stream will be over the UK this weekend and the pattern of the jet is interesting.
“It has gone into a zonal direction blowing over the Atlantic and that is sufficient to move the lows towards the UK.”
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Exacta Weather forecaster James Madden added: “The outlook is for some potentially heavy and widespread thundery showers across the country.”
Temperatures will stay, at best, at around average for the time of year and a far cry from the mid-30Cs of just a couple of weeks ago.
Thermometers in the north will hover around the 21C (69.8F) mark while further north will be lucky to see anything above 15C (59F) this weekend.
Overnight lows could nudge towards low single figures in Scotland and northern England with southern Britain expected to dip to the mid-teens.
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