Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

The UK has experienced its hottest day of the year so far, with temperatures soaring to 28.3C (82.9F) in Wisley, Surrey. This spike in temperature comes as a four-day heat health alert, issued by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) and the Met Office, takes effect from Monday until Thursday.

Heatwave Conditions Across the UK

London saw temperatures peak at 27.4C (81.3F) in St James’s Park, while Aberdeenshire reached 26.9C (80.4F). The heatwave is expected to intensify, with some areas possibly seeing temperatures as high as 31C (87.8F) later in the week.

Cold Front on the Horizon

Despite the current heat, Sky News meteorologist Dr. Chris England predicts a cold front moving in from the south, expected to bring cooler air to most parts of the UK by Thursday. However, the southern regions might experience another hot day before the cold front arrives.

Health Alerts and Pollen Levels

The heat health alert, effective from 8am on Monday until 5pm on Thursday, warns of minor impacts across the health and social care sector for every region in England except the North East. There is potential for significant impacts, particularly for those over 65 or with pre-existing health conditions. Additionally, hay fever sufferers are warned of “very high” pollen levels across the UK until Thursday.

Weather Conditions and Public Safety

Mark Sidaway, deputy chief meteorologist at the Met Office, cautions that despite some areas meeting heatwave criteria, the weather may not bring the “wall-to-wall sunshine and blue skies” people expect. The heatwave threshold is defined by the Met Office as at least three consecutive days with maximum temperatures exceeding 25C for most of the UK, or 28C in London and its surrounding areas.

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