Met Office warning update: Amber alert for heavy snow as 19 inches to hit UK

BBC Weather: Carol Kirkwood warns of more snow for UK

Met Office forecasters have issued six days of warnings as snow, ice and rain continue to hit the UK. Now up to 19 inches is forecast to hit over the weekend, with Met Office amber alerts in place over Friday and Saturday. The barrage of cold weather is due to a mass of cold air from Scandinavia is sitting across the north of the UK for much of this week.

Met Office Chief Meteorologist, Frank Saunders, said: “Further spells of snow will continue to affect parts of northern England and Scotland during Wednesday and Thursday.

“There could be continued travel disruption across northern trans-Pennine routes and the higher roads across the Southern Uplands and Grampians.

“Meanwhile, a period of heavy rain overnight into early Wednesday will result in rapid thawing of snow in places, particularly north east England, which may lead to a risk of flooding.”

Warnings for snow, ice and rain are in place until Monday, with new amber warnings for snow issued across the weekend.

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The forecasters warn: “By Friday, snow is expected to become more widespread, persistent and heavy, and will settle at increasingly low levels.

“The heaviest snowfall should clear later on Saturday.”

In terms of snowfall totals, 3.9 to 5.9 inches (10 to 15 cm) is possible at low-levels, with 7.8 to 11.8 inches (20 to 30 cm) accumulating above about 150 m.

However, some higher areas could see up to 19.6 inches (50cm). 

The forecasters warn: “The strong easterly winds will likely lead to drifting snow, temporary blizzard conditions, and ice forming on exposed power lines and phone masts.”

The amber warning is in place from midnight on Friday until 6pm on Saturday.

The warning area includes Central, Tayside & Fife, Grampian, Highlands & Eilean Siar and Strathclyde.

Met Office Deputy Chief Meteorologist, Mark Sidaway, said: “Into the weekend snow will continue across much of Scotland, and is likely to increasingly fall to low levels before beginning to move south into northern and eastern England.”

“We are likely to see some very large accumulations across higher parts of Scotland especially, with strong winds leading to significant drifting and blizzard conditions at times.”

“Although amounts of snow across England are likely to be less, they could still cause some problems as we go into the weekend.”

Further snow warnings are in place leading up to the weekend, with Scotland and the North of England the worst impacted areas.

One snow warning for Central, Tayside and Fife, Grampian, Highlands and Eilean Siar, North East England, North West England, SW Scotland, Lothian Borders and Strathclyde is in place now until 6pm on Thursday. 

Up to 15.7 inches (40cm) is possible across the Grampians, with accumulations of 3.9 to 7.8 inches (10 to 20cm) expected elsewhere.

Yet more snow warnings are in place across the weekend and into next week, with a snow and ice warning spanning the East of England on Sunday into Monday.

This is due to cold conditions continuing through the weekend, with snow and ice likely to cause disruption, however, it is too soon to say exactly which areas will be impacted.

The Met Office warns: “Cold air will spread across the UK during the weekend with wintry showers likely to push inland into parts of England from the North Sea.

“This is likely to bring areas of accumulating snow through the period with some icy stretches developing.

“At this stage no single area can be highlighted as more at risk but given the coldness of the air disruption is possible at times.” 

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