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Storm Isha to cause major disruption as part of wet and windier weekend

20 Jan 2024 3 minute read
High tide at Porthcawl. Picture by Jeremy Segrott (CC BY 2.0).

Storm Isha will bring winds of up to 80mph and heavy rain, posing a risk to life and damage to buildings, as part of a wet and windier weekend across Wales and the UK.

The Met Office has issued yellow and amber weather warnings for both wind and rain for Wales, northern and western England, Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland from Sunday into Monday.

Forecasters then said there was a risk to life in coastal areas from large waves and debris being blown inland, and yellow warnings for wind and rain coming into force on Sunday, covering much of the rest of the UK – mean flooding is likely.

The amber wind warnings also mean potential power cuts and loss of mobile phone signal in affected areas, while roads and bridges are likely to be shut and rail and bus services could face delays and cancellations.

An amber cold health alert, issued by the UK Health Security Agency, is in place until Saturday at noon. It warns of possible impact on the health and social care sector.

But warmer temperatures will replace the recent snow and sub-zero chills at the weekend, with highs of 12C possible on Sunday.

Senior meteorologist for BBC Wales, Derek Brockway said in a recent post on X: “Increasing windy on Sunday as #StormIsha approaches. A wet and very windy end to the weekend! The worst of the severe gales in Wales during Sunday evening into the night. Gusts 50-75mph. 80-90mph possible in Capel Curig. The gales will ease on Monday.”

Named storms

A yellow wind warning will be in place from Tuesday afternoon until midday on Wednesday, covering Northern Ireland, north Wales, northern England and much of Scotland.

It says people should expect travel disruption, power cuts, damage to buildings and large waves, with gusts of 45-55mph likely inland, but there is the potential for 60-70mph winds.

Storm Isha is the ninth named storm to hit the UK since the season began in September.

Each storm is named when it poses a risk to people and they are given names beginning with consecutive letters of the alphabet.

The record number of named storms in one year is when the Met Office began the practice in 2015/16, with Storm Katie being the eleventh and final storm of the season.

If there are three more named storms between next week and August, this year will mark a new record.

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