UK weather: Rail services to be affected as Britain brace for ‘exceptional heat’ next week

BBC Weather: UK forecast continued heatwave conditions

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According to the Met Office, exceptional heat is possible for southern and central areas of the UK late this weekend and early next week, with temperatures likely in excess of 35C in some places. The extreme temperatures are likely to disrupt the rail services with many trains on Avanti West Coast set to experience delays over the next few days.

An Amber Extreme heat warning, which is an impact-based warning designed to highlight impacts to protect lives, property and infrastructure, has been issued for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

Temperatures are likely to peak in excess of 35C in southern, central and eastern areas of England, and more widely around 32C within the warning area.

Tuesday currently looks to see the peak of this heat, although exceptional warmth is likely throughout the warning period.

The train operator tweeted: “There will be disruption to services over the next few days due to a shortage of train crew, and extreme weather conditions.

“On Saturday 16 and Sun 17 July services may be cancelled at short notice. On Monday 18 and Tue 19 July amended timetables and extended journey times are expected.

“Services that do run from 16 to 19 July are expected to be very busy. Please do check before you travel on the morning of your journey.”

Temperatures are also set to remain high overnight, particularly in urban areas, with a high likelihood of tropical nights – when minimum temperatures don’t drop below 20C – for some early next week.

A Level 3 UK Health Security Agency Heat Health Alert, which is aimed at those specifically in the health and social care sector, has also been issued from Saturday to Tuesday, advising people to look out for vulnerable people and those with underlying health conditions.

Heatwave criteria, when specific temperature thresholds must be exceeded three days running, had already been met in some locations earlier this week, and are expected to be met again by early next week.

This is most likely across England and Wales, but also fairly likely for eastern Scotland too.

Warm summer conditions will remain in place for much of the week for the majority of England and Wales, albeit slightly less hot on Thursday, when temperatures are more likely to peak in the mid-20s for many.

High pressure near the southern half of the UK is responsible for this week’s warm spell and builds back into the UK for Thursday, bringing largely dry and clear weather for many for the rest of this week.

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During the weekend, a developing southerly flow will allow very high temperatures currently building over the continent to start to spread northwards into the UK.

Further north, eastern areas of Scotland could see temperatures in excess of 25C in a few places, well above their average for the time of year.

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist Tony Wardle said: “Maximum temperatures have been well above average almost everywhere in the UK this week, the exception perhaps being the Western and Northern Isles of Scotland.

“Following a return to nearer average, locally rather cool temperatures over the next few days, the hot weather looks likely to steadily ramp up once again this weekend, peaking early next week.

“From Sunday, but more likely Monday and Tuesday, peak maximum temperatures are likely be in excess of 35C, especially across central, southern and eastern England, with a chance of some locations being even hotter.

“Elsewhere, maxima will generally range from high 20s to low 30s of Celsius.

“This, coupled with overnight minima not falling below 20C in many locations, has considerable potential to cause widespread societal impacts, which is behind the issue of an Amber Extreme heat warning.”

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