Friday, 18 Sep 2020

UK heatwave could see Britain bake in 38°C – hotter than Jamaica

Britain is on track to see its hottest day of the year record broken on Friday before baking in highs of 30C every day until Tuesday.  

The heatwave is being blown in by the 700-mile-wide Sahara wind that saw Spain reach a blistering 45C in June.

The highest temperatures will hit central, eastern and south eastern England with London and Cambridge potentially reaching highs of 38C.

The Met office has announced a level three heat health level, advising the elderly and vulnerable and young children to be prepared for the temperature change.

Met Office forecaster Aidan McGivern said: ‘These are truly exceptional temperatures.’

A UK heatwave threshold is met when a location records a period of at least three consecutive days with daily maximum temperatures meeting or exceeding the heatwave temperature threshold. The threshold varies by each county.

The Heat-Health Watch service – provided by Public Health England – has different thresholds that it uses to decide whether safety alerts need to be issued. These thresholds vary by region, but an average threshold temperature is 30°C by day and 15°C overnight for at least two consecutive days.

A level three alert is issued when the Heat-Health Watch thresholds have been exceeded.

‘This stage requires social and healthcare services to target specific actions at high-risk groups,’ the Met Office said.

Vulnerable people in the south of England have been warned to take precautions including closing curtains on sun-facing rooms, drinking plenty of fluids and to avoid excess alcohol.

As staycations are booming across the country – and Halfords has reported a sales surge in camping equipment – seaside towns Brighton and Bournemouth are expecting visitors in the hundreds of thousands.

The Met Office forecasts that the exceptional heat will cool towards the middle of next week, with a risk of thunder for some parts.

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