That’s torn it, there have been gusts higher than the 80 mph upper limit in the Met Office’s amber alert, but if we keep quiet and don’t mention it, they might just get away with it. The stations in question are Valley with a gust to 81 mph at 15 UTC, and Aberdaron with a gust of 90 mph, you just knew somehow that the upper limit of 80 mph was going to be exceeded, especially with a ferocious southwesterly 75 knot gradient (and I’m guessing here) running straight up the Irish Sea. I can’t see them upping their existing amber warning, although you never know.
A quick résumé of the winds so far today from storm Ophelia (fig 1), the gust to 96 mph at Roches Point at 11 UTC remain the highest so far. It’s interesting to note, that apart from the winds from Roches Point, all the extremes gusts have remained below 80 mph. Winds are now peaking across the west and north of Wales at the moment (fig 2), so far they have been within the limits given in the amber warning.
I know that many of the last 16 postings I’ve made today have been concerning storm Ophelia – never fear – here’s an article about something totally different – Central England Temperatures. The Met Office have just fixed the server that generates the provisional CET daily values on their website, and let me tell you they haven’t done that since the 3rd of October, so I was chafing at the bit to see just how mild October 2017 had been till now. In actually fact not only is October 2017 currently the 12th mildest mean temperature since 1772, the year 2017 to date is also the joint sixth warmest as well.
Welcome to the whacky world of xmetman.
I reckon the very worst is now over for the south coast of Ireland, the wind has veered southwesterly and although it’s still gusting to more than 80 mph at Roches point the gradient should start to open a bit as the wind veers a little more into the west. Massive pressure rises over Valentia in the southwest now pushing Ophelia north-northeast where it should finally make landfall in county Clare or Galway. I see Weybourne in Norfolk reached 23.2°C at 13 UTC so it did break the warmest day record. By the way the contouring can’t handle Ophelia at all well but you probably already noticed that.
I installed Thunderbird on my computer a few weeks ago, after using Microsoft Outlook as my email client of choice for many year. For some reason Thunderbird flags absolutely everything that I receive from the Met Office as junk, and labels each message ‘This message may be scam’ in red. I can’t help wondering if Mozilla know something I don’t know about the organisation! By the way I’m rather impressed with Thunderbird and wished that I’d made the change much sooner, best as well as being free it’s not cloud based!
I thought that I would download the latest Camborne ascent and see what all the fuss was with all the talk of warm air over the higher hills, but unfortunately the 12 UTC didn’t fly, so I had to make do with the one launched just before midnight (fig 1).
So basically if you hiked your way up to the top of Yes Tor from Meldon reservoir just before midnight last night, there would be some good news and some bad news:
- The bad news is that you would probably be blown over by the southerly severe gale force nine that was blowing at the time.
- The good news is that the temperature would have been around 22.7°C so you could have done it in the nude.
- The extra bit of good news is that if you had taken your washing up with you to hang out, it would be have been dry in extra quick time because of the strength of the wind and the low relative humidity of 30%,
- The extra bit of bad news is that you would probably have to drive to Okehampton before you could pick it up!
Isn’t science wonderful!
There’s nothing quite like the British weather, with gusts of 67 mph on the Scilly Isles in the west on the 12 UTC chart (fig 1), and temperature of 23.2°C in the east at Manston, which more than likely makes it the warmest 16th October on record. In Ireland the storm force winds continue, and are still gusting in excess of 90 mph on the south coast, as Ophelia tracks slightly northwest of Valentia on the west coast, what about this for a pressure kick (fig 2).
It’s official! This morning’s blood-red sun was caused by Saharan dust, so says Simon King the BBC weather presenter.
It’s a good job Met Éireann wisely decided to up the status red this morning because the wind has been gusting to 96 mph at Roches Point on the south coast of Ireland (fig 1), and meaning 62 knots – that’s storm force 11 and just two knots of hurricane force 12 – at 11 UTC. Ophelia has still to make landfall, but must be very close to Valentia now, where the pressure at 11 UTC was 962.3 hPa and fell 9.6 hpa in the last hour.
It almost looks to me that ex-hurricane Ophelia has managed somehow to develop an eye like feature in the 1045 UTC visible satellite image. I did at first think that it maybe a shadow, but it does have the distinct appearance of an eye to it. A better quality satellite image would settle it but of course we can’t access hi-res rapid scan imagery can we. Please don’t bother commenting t o explain that hurricanes can’t survive in the cold waters around the UK without reading this article about Hurricane Debbie in 1961 first!