UK issues ‘extreme’ weather warning before another heatwave

Weekend weather: UK prepares for another heatwave

A look ahead to the weekend’s weather as parts of England are hit with amber weather warning for extreme heat.

A four-day ‘‘extreme heat’’ warning has come into force in parts of England and Wales, with temperatures poised to top 35 degrees Celsius in another heatwave that could cause wildfires and pressure water supplies and transport services.

The Met Office says its amber warning, its second-most severe after red, will last until the end of Sunday and cautioned that people vulnerable to extreme heat could face adverse health effects.

Temperatures are expected to peak at 35 degrees on Friday and may hit 36 degrees in some places on Saturday.

“The grass in London is tinderbox dry and the smallest of sparks can start a blaze which could cause devastation,” London Fire Brigade Assistant Commissioner Jonathan Smith said on Thursday.

The UK and much of NW Europe is dry and parched as shown in this satellite image taken yesterday. Conditions are not likely to improve much over the coming days with a new #heatwave now underway.

— Met Office (@metoffice) August 10, 2022

The brigade, which faced its busiest week since World War II during July’s heatwave, said it had tackled 340 grass, rubbish and open land fires in the first week of August, compared with just 42 in the same week last year.

The Met Office raised its forecast for fire severity in London and other parts of England over the next few days to “exceptional” or level 5, its highest.

The warning follows the driest July for England since 1935, when temperatures rose above 40 degrees for the first time, turning a renewed spotlight to the impacts of climate change.

Other European nations have also faced a scorching heatwave in recent weeks with temperatures often exceeding 40 degrees.

With high temperatures forecasted for many parts of the UK this week, here is some advice @BritishVets on how to make sure your pets stay safe in the heat 👇#WeatherReady

— Met Office (@metoffice) August 10, 2022

During July’s heatwave, Britain, which is less used to such high temperatures, faced power outages, damage to airport runways and rail tracks and dozens of blazes in London that destroyed properties and vehicles.

Britain’s environment minister George Eustice on Wednesday urged water companies to take precautions to protect water supplies and tackle the effects of the prolonged dry weather.

Several water companies have already imposed restrictions on water usage and supermarkets have limited sales of disposable barbecues that firefighters warn can set light to tinder-dry grass.

This week’s amber warning follows Britain’s first-ever red ‘‘extreme heat’’ warning in July.


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