The UK could be hit by 70mph winds and torrential rainfall when the remains of Hurricane Lorenzo arrive next week. The country was struck by heavy rain overnight and the bad weather is set to continue when the storm sweeps across Britain on Thursday. The Met Office said there was a potential for Lorenzo to bring strong winds and flooding and described the weather system as a ‘real beast’.
Hurricane Lorenzo has strengthened into a Category 5 storm in the central Atlantic Ocean, making it the strongest storm ever observed so far north and east in the Atlantic basin. The US National Hurricane Centre said late yesterday night the storm has maximum sustained winds of 160 mph (257 kph). Lorenzo is moving north at 10 mph (16 kph) and is centered about 1,410 miles (2,269 kilometres) southwest of the Azores, a Portuguese island chain.
Yellow weather warnings were put in place from 6pm on Saturday to 5pm on Sunday, warning of persistent rain and a risk of flooding across the north-west and south-west of England and Wales.
Areas such as Devon and Cornwall could see coastal gales of up to 50mph, while between 30mm and 40mm of rain is expected to fall within the warning area over the weekend. Cities including Manchester, Liverpool, Bangor, Swansea and Cardiff are also covered by the weather warning. The flood warnings have led to events being canceled, including the inaugural Regatta London race that was meant to take place on the River Thames today. The Cycling Road World Championships in Yorkshire had to change its route because of the bad weather.
Met Office meteorologist Mark Wilson said: ‘It’s going to be quite wet across much of England, Wales and Northern Ireland and it will be quite windy particularly across the south coast, although through Sunday it will slowly clear its way eastward. ‘There’s quite a wet day to come across most of northern England with some heavy showers moving up from the south – we will see some strong winds too.’ Mr Wilson added Sunday would see a quieter evening, only for the heavy rain to return to much of the country on Monday. A fresh yellow weather warning is due to come into force at the beginning of next week, stretching from North Yorkshire down to the south of Wales.