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Extreme cold 

Jan 21st 2017

Britain will wake up to a chilly weekend, with widespread frost and patches of fog potentially causing dangerous driving conditions.

Temperatures are expected to plummet to -7C (19.4F) in some rural areas, according to forecasters.

A cold start on Friday morning resulted in temperatures as low as -7C (in South Farnborough, Hampshire, -6C in Woburn, Bedfordshire, and -6C in Benson, Oxfordshire.

A Met Office spokesman said: “The cold conditions are expected to continue into the weekend with widespread frost expected, especially throughout the south of England.”

The AA said drivers should plan their journeys. “Wear warm layers and plan your route, where possible favouring roads which have been gritted. Stopping distances can be 10 times greater in icy conditions, so keep your speed down and leave plenty of extra space behind the car in front,” a spokesman said.

“Avoid harsh acceleration, braking or cornering. Gentle manoeuvres are key. It may mean you need to allow extra time for the journey – plus extra time to de-ice the car – but you will be keeping yourself and your passengers safe.

“If it’s foggy, use your fog lights if you need to – don’t rely on automatic lights, as they may not come on in fog – but remember to turn them off once visibility improves.”

 Jan 11th 2017

“Thundersnow” and blizzards could sweep away the UK’s mild weather as an Arctic cold spell blowing in from the north looks set to cause temperatures to tumble.

Yellow warnings for wind and snow have been issued by the Met Office, with showers expected to bring 2cm to 5cm of snow at lower levels and 10cm to 20cm on ground above 200 metres.

The warnings affect Scotland, Northern Ireland and parts of the North West from Wednesday, and expand to include Wales and eastern England by Thursday and into Friday.

With the cold air originating over Arctic Canada, Met Office meteorologist Emma Sharples warned: “We could get some blizzard-type conditions, especially at height.”

Talking about “thundersnow”, where the rain associated with a thunderstorm falls as snow, she said: “It is possible, all that really needs is for thunder to happen at the same time as the snow.

“So where you get very active or vigorous showers – which is what we are going to see… then we could well get some thunder as well. It is definitely possible.”

Ms Sharples said the snow at lower levels will come in the form of showers and is unlikely to build up too much, unless there is “shower after shower coming over the same location”.

But she warned: “Even a centimetre of snow in this country can obviously cause some disruption,” adding that there could be “some showers inland, but they are likely to be short-lived”.

The Met Office said: “Lightning may accompany the heaviest showers, with potential disruption to power supplies as a consequence.”

On Wednesday and Thursday, wind gusts of up to 55mph are expected in exposed coastal areas and on hills.

Overnight frosts are also set to develop in most places, with severe frost likely where there is snow on the ground in the north.

In terms of temperatures, Ms Sharples said: “We are looking at low single figures, 2C to 5C by day, and then overnight it will vary across the country. But where there is snow lying it could be heading towards double minus figures, minus 8c or minus 10C, especially in towns and cities, and probably in the north of England and Scotland.”

Rod Dennis, of the RAC, urged drivers to plan their trips carefully and “consider rearranging any non-essential journeys in the parts of the country most likely to be affected by the bad weather”, as well as checking tyre tread and pressure, windscreen wipers and screen wash levels.

“Try to avoid braking and turning at the same time. When approaching a bend in the road, reduce your speed first and then begin to turn. Above all, avoid the temptation to brake sharply as that will make you lose control,” he added.

Jan 10th 2016

reezing temperatures have left more than 20 people dead across Europe.

Even the Greek islands and parts of southern Italy have been blanketed in snow .

And forecasters say Britain is likely to be hit with a blast of winter weather later this week.

In Italy, seven people died of the cold as ferries and flights were cancelled.

In Turkey, the Bosphorus waterway was closed to shipping as a snowstorm hit Istanbul.

And at least 10 people died of cold in Poland.

Northern Greece had temperatures of minus 15C (5F), where an Afghan migrant died of cold last week and even the popular holiday island of Crete received a dusting of snow.

Three people perished in Czech capital Prague and two Iraqi migrants were found dead in a forest in the south-east of Bulgaria.

Black ice across northern and western Germany caused many accidents and fire-fighters in Hamburg were called to weather -related accidents 415 times over the weekend.

The Met Office said the north-west of the UK will be hit by snow and sleet towards the end of the week, with temperatures expected to plummet to around minus 2C by Friday.

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