UK could be set for heatwave – with temperatures hotter than the Caribbean


An official heatwave could hit the UK on Thursday, with some parts basking in temperatures hotter than top holiday destinations in the Caribbean.

Temperatures are expected to soar to 37C (98.6F) by the end of the week, caused by hot air moving in from southern Europe.

It means parts of the country will be basking in warmer conditions than popular holiday destinations such as Jamaica, Barbados and the Bahamas.

The high temperatures are expected to last from Thursday until Sunday, prompting the Met Office to issue a health alert.

Britain could pass the official threshold for a heatwave, which requires three days of temperatures over 25C (77F) across most of the nation and 28C (82.4F) in London.

Forecasters have said London and the South East may see Friday record the hottest temperature of the year so far, beating 31 July when the mercury reached 37.8C (100.04F) at Heathrow in west London. It was also the UK’s third highest temperature ever recorded.

A health alert has been issued for the South East ahead of the high temperatures.

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A level three warning is triggered when there is a 90% chance of heat-related health problems.

It will be in place from midday on Thursday until 9am on Sunday.

It means people are being advised to look out for others during the sweltering conditions, especially older people, children and babies, and those with underlying health conditions.

Thundery showers and cooler conditions are expected to end the heatwave on Monday.

There will also be an increasing threat of thunderstorms and intensive downpours as the country pulls in the very warm continental air.

Met Office forecaster Oli Claydon said: “There’s a strong likelihood London and the South East could see a heatwave this week, with four or even five consecutive days of incredibly warm temperatures reaching a high of 37C on Friday.

“It is the result of southerly winds moving from Europe and parts of northern Africa, which will push the temperatures up.”

The highest UK temperature remains 38.7C (102F), which was recorded on 25 July 2019 in Cambridge.

Thursday is expected to begin overcast for most of the country, but it will be a dry day for all.

When the sun starts to break through in the afternoon, temperatures could reach 30C (86F) in London.

Despite the high temperatures in the South East on Friday, rain is expected in the northwest of Scotland and Northern Ireland with highs of 22C (71.6F).

Wales and the North and South West of England will be sunny, with temperatures reaching around 25C (77F).

Mr Claydon added: “Saturday will likely be another hot day for southern and central parts of the UK, with heatwave conditions potentially continuing in parts of southern and southeast England.

“Sunday should be the last of the heatwave conditions, before cold air moves in overnight leading to some thundery showers on Monday.”

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