A sun­shine week­end ... then comes the storm

Daily Mail - - News - By Ge­orge Odling

WARM coats and Christ­mas dec­o­ra­tions may be in the shops – but the sun still has one last hur­rah in store be­fore win­ter really sets in.

The coun­try is set to en­joy a mini-heat­wave this week­end, with tem­per­a­tures reach­ing as high as 24C (75F) in some re­gions.

How­ever, after the calm comes the storm – as soon after a hur­ri­cane is pre­dicted to lash the coun­try. Hur­ri­cane Ophe­lia, which is sweep­ing its way to­wards Bri­tain from the Azores, could bring 50mph gales and driv­ing rain.

The winds will ar­rive after a warm and sunny week­end. Lon­don could be al­most 10C (50F) hot­ter than the av­er­age max­i­mum tem­per­a­ture for Oc­to­ber, which is about 15.3C (59.5F).

And while the North West will have some wet and windy con­di­tions to­day, with patches of rain con­tin­u­ing to Satur­day, Sun­day is fore­cast to be dry and fine. But the balmy weather will not last, with Ophe­lia set to hit on Mon­day – although by the time it reaches the UK, it will not be strong enough to be cat­e­gorised as a hur­ri­cane.

Met Of­fice spokesman Gra­ham Madge said: ‘On Mon­day we are ex­pect­ing the ar­rival of Hur­ri­cane Ophe­lia, which is cur­rently a cat­e­gory one storm.

‘The weather sys­tem will make its way north, bring­ing some windy con­di­tions with it, though we don’t really have the sea tem­per­a­tures to sus­tain real hur­ri­cane con­di­tions.’

The storm’s ar­rival in the UK co­in­cides with the 30th anniversary of the Great Storm of 1987, which hit south­ern Eng­land on the night of Oc­to­ber 15-16. It claimed 18 lives as well as caus­ing around £1bil­lion worth of dam­age.

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