SSEN's Weather Watch for February 2018
The weather statistics for January are now in, and they show a split across the UK, with Scotland having below average temperatures but above average values were recorded for most of Wales and England, notably for south east England.
Looking further afield across mainland Europe, January was a very mild month, relative to the 30 year average, but it was also very wet in France and Switzerland. The map above - from MeteoGroup - shows the temperature departures from average for January with blue being colder than average and red being warmer.
Our weather forecasting analysis for February suggests the month can be divided into three parts. The week commencing 5 February is likely to be cold with well below average temperatures with a high risk of snow showers, even to lower levels, so travelling conditions could become difficult with the patchy ice and snow on the roads. It’s also going to be a sunnier week than normal for the time of year and 7 February stands out as an especially sunny day for most parts. Later in the day, thickening cloud will bring outbreaks of rain to north west UK with hill and mountain snow.
The period 8 to around 22 February is likely to be unsettled with changeable weather patterns. It should be overall milder and windier, but as each cold front moves east, we’ll find a temporary drop in temperatures and a return to snow showers especially in the north.
The map on the main nes page shows the predicted average weather map for 12-16 February – ihe main low pressure area will be centred near Iceland and the high pressure way out towards the Azores. Most of the time we will have weather coming in from the nearby Atlantic Ocean and rainfall is expected to be above average for many parts, although north east Scotland could be sheltered and see less rain than normal. It’s a fairly wind week as well, right across the UK and Ireland.
The third part of the month (in terms of weather regimes) is 23-28 February, and during this time, the weather is likely to feature a return to below or well below average temperatures. We believe there is a 60% risk of this cold weather becoming established for the end of the month, and it could last well into March. Wind and precipitation levels will decline during the last week of February but the risk of snow is higher than normal. Some very cold nights are expected too.
So prepare for some more cold snaps this winter, and we’ll keep you posted on how this cold weather pattern unfolds and how long it will last into March.
For more weather information you can follow our senior meteorologist, Simon Cardy on twitter @weather_king.