Stormy Thursday From UK To Denmark Sets Stage For Bitter Friday

Written by on December 3, 2013 in Rest of Europe, United Kingdom & Ireland with 0 Comments

A rather innocuous ‘dent’ embedded within a brisk west upper flow is soon to take centre stage on our weather maps here in the UK and Western Europe over the next 72 hours. This mere dent is soon to become a major Atlantic depression with pressure expected to plunge some 20 to 40mb over a 12 to 24 hour period as it makes it’s closest approach to Scotland Thursday morning. The tight thermal gradient and powerful upper jet is the fuel behind this storm and as it rapidly deepens Wednesday night into Thursday, so the isobars pack tight, not only bringing severe-gale, even hurricane-force NW winds to Scotland, so it will cause surface temperatures to plunge as these damaging winds funnel arctic air south.

This low deepens into the 960s in mb as it passes through the Skagerrak which separates Denmark from Sweden. Look out for blizzard conditions over the Scottish Mountains while snow may fall to low levels later Thursday over Central and Southern Scotland as well as Northern England with highs of only 2 or 3C, wind chills will feel like it’s well below freezing.

Here’s the ECMWF surface chart which shows the rapid formation of this low.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

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60 hrs

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Notice the pressure according to the model drops from 998 to 976 between 48 and 60 hrs. The strongest winds are on the west and south side of the centre so we’re likely to see widespread 50 to 60 mph gusts, locally 70 mph with exposed coasts and higher ground 80+mph. On top of Cairngorm, winds are likely to top 100-110 mph with exceptionally cold wind chills.

The ingredients are perfect with large temperature spread within a short distance and strong jet stream aloft. This will be one of the more dramatic pattern changes as gales and severe gales introduce arctic air into Scotland and the rest of the UK. Heavy rain will likely turn to snow even to low levels.

ECMWF surface pressure by 60 hrs.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Plenty of upper support with 160 knot winds racing overhead, drawing arctic air southeast over the UK at 66 hrs.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

With the intense low close by and core of strongest winds expected to be right over Scotland and northern England Thursday morning, expect damage and bitter wind chills given the type of air mass coming south.

Here’s the ECMWF 10 metre wind gusts in knots Thursday.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

By late Thursday into Friday morning, the surface low is deepest and the strongest, potentially most damaging winds shift across the other side of the North Sea, taking direct aim at Denmark. My loyal Danish subscriber, Michael I know will be watching this one carefully, especially after the record winds caused by a storm back a month or so ago.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

The cold is firmly over the UK by Friday.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

By Friday the strongest winds ease down and we’re bathed in an arctic air mass briefly before milder air pushes in from the west but before that milder air returns, winds slacken and with clear skies and cold, dry air in place, look out for a very cold night Friday into Saturday.

Interestingly, the ECMWF appears to be faster than previously thought at pushing Atlantic air back into Ireland and the UK. As early as Saturday, westerly winds appear to freshen and this is the start of the warming trend while the core of cold promptly shifts into the heart of Europe. The only thing that may slow the warming trend perhaps till Sunday or Monday is snow cover.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Certainly by Monday, mild air is back in control.

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

Courtesy/Owned by AccuWeather Pro

While next week’s warmer pattern looks likely to hold into mid-December, the GFS ensemble is becoming bolder with a colder -NAO/AO signal for the second half of the month.

nao_sprd2

ao_sprd2

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