UK weather: New Beast from the East likely warns expert
Marco Pentagna told BBC Radio 4 the sudden stratospheric warming event will bring particularly cold conditions to the UK. The Met Office meteorologist compared the warming event to the infamous Beast from the East in 2018.
Mr Pentagna said: “On average we get a sudden stratospheric warming event taking place every other year.
“This is because of the tilt of the earth this time of year with the northern hemisphere pointing away from the sun.
“We tend to get a very cool pool of air forming above the north pole in the stratosphere and because of the temperature gradient that creates we get what is called a polar night jet stream.
“It is a fast movement of westerly winds flowing around the cold pool of air and every now and again packets of energy get forced up into the stratosphere, they interact with that jet stream and those westerly winds can then reverse and become easterly.
“When that happens, we call it a major stratospheric warming event.
“Those easterly winds in the stratosphere can percolate down to the surface and influence our weather at the surface.
“Effectively it increases the chances of cold weather.”
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Mr Pentaga continued: “In 2018 we saw the Beast from the East which was particularly cold conditions.
“If we tap into some cold air coming from Russia, then it could turn particularly cold.
“How cold it will get at this stage it is too early to say.”
The Met Office meteorologist said these cold conditions will hit the UK around January 6.
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The Met Office said: “Polar continental air only reaches Britain between November and April.
“At other times of the year, the source region is neither cold nor snow-covered and winds from northeastern Europe bring a form of tropical continental air.”
The original Beast from the East rocked the UK from February 24 2018 to March 5 2018.
The cold wave across Britain and Ireland caused unusually low temperatures.
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