UK Heatwave Unstoppable Unbearable climate Crossed 40C
Today the UK officially reached 40C – something the Met Office said was “virtually impossible” in an undisrupted climate.
But with human-induced climate change, such extreme temperatures have now become a reality.
The mercury hit 40.2C (104.3F) at Heathrow at 12.50pm.
An hour later, the same temperature was reached in the Lincolnshire village of Coningsby. By 4.12pm, the temperature there had risen to 40.3C – the highest ever recorded in the UK.
Earlier in the day, 39.1C (102.3F) was recorded in Charlwood, Surrey – breaking the previous record of 38.7C (101.7F) set in 2019 at Cambridge Botanic Garden.
As of 5pm, 34 weather stations had exceeded the previous UK temperature record of 38.7C, and five had equalled it.
The night-time temperature record was broken overnight, as Kenley in Surrey hit 25.8C (78.4F).
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How is day passing in UK Heatwave:
The UK recorded its hottest-ever recorded temperature of 40.3C in Coningsby in Lincolnshire
Over 34 locations exceeded the UK’s previous temperature record of 38.7C from 2019, according to the Met Office
Scotland recorded its hottest day with a temperature of 34.8C
Two more people were confirmed to have died after getting into difficulty in water in separate incidents, bringing the total in recent days to five. Four were teenage boys and a fifth was a man aged 20
The London Fire Brigade declared a major incident after a number of fires broke out in and around the capital
A major blaze in the village of Wennington in east London ripped through fields and homes, with the full extent of the damage – and any casualties – yet to be determined
Hertfordshire and Leicestershire fire services also declared major incidents
Train travellers were around 40% lower than this time last week, Network Rail said, with many services disrupted by the heat. Some disruption is expected into Wednesday, with customers advised to check before they travel
Firefighters have been tackling many fires across the country, including a number in and around the capital, leading to London Fire Brigade declaring a major incident. Some of these include:
Wennington, east London: 100 firefighters involved in tackling a blaze
Upminster, east London: 175 firefighters tackled a grass fire on Pea Lane
Chapel View, Croydon: four fire engines dealt with a grass fire
Shirley Hills, Croydon: 25 firefighters attended grass fires in the park
Dartford, Kent: 12 fire engines deployed near the A2
Wembley, west London: eight fire engines and 60 firefighters tackling a fire
A line-side fire near the London Euston-Milton Keynes railway caused all services on the line to be suspended
HOW TO STAY SAFE IN THE UK Heatwave – OFFICIAL ADVICE
Keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm and avoid physical exertion
Drink plenty of fluids and avoid excess alcohol
Close curtains in rooms that face the sun
Never leave anyone in a parked car – and check in on elderly and vulnerable neighbours
Walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a wide-brimmed hat
Check medicines can be stored according to instructions – and check that your fridges, freezers and fans are working properly.
The sweltering heat has already caused significant travel disruption, with Luton Airport forced to suspend flights on Monday because of a defect in the runway.
On Tuesday, police said a section of a dual carriageway in Cambridgeshire was left looking like a “skatepark” after it warped in the heat.
Rail users have been warned of delays and cancellations as the heat takes its toll on the country’s infrastructure.
There will be no Thameslink or Great Northern trains running in any location north of London, from London Blackfriars via St Pancras, or from London King’s Cross or London Moorgate.
Merseyrail said the number of trains running and journey times will be “seriously affected” and some routes closed completely.
LNER will run no trains from south of York and south of Leeds to London King’s Cross.
Southern, Southeastern, South Western Railway and Great Western Railway are among the dozens of train companies running significantly reduced services across the country.
Transport for London (TfL) said London’s rail network would also be running a reduced service due to safety restrictions put into place to deal with the heat.
‘A pretty unprecedented day’
Rachel Ayers, a Met Office forecaster, said Tuesday will be “a pretty unprecedented day”, with temperatures possibly reaching highs of 41C (105.8F) in spots in England.
Scotland and Wales could also see their hottest days on record. UK Heatwave
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