Here is a table showing the effects of wind chill, familiar to mountaineers. The blue zones are what Reigate and the SE has experienced in recent days with gusts of 15mph in freezing air taking “feels like” temperatures down to -13ºC. Note that this is the zone of “maximum” danger for hypothermia because people tend to underestimate the effects of any breeze in temperatures hovering around freezing and under-dress. Note that a slight breeze is enough to cause the greatest chilling effect. These cool and breezy conditions are also more common in mid-latitude populated areas like the SE of England where winter temperatures frequently hover around 0ºC. Dry air feels colder than humid / moist air: there’s more evaporative cooling into dry air and dry air also conducts heat away from your warm body more readily than does moist air.
Archives For nature
An unusual winter pressure pattern is building in the early part of next week: a HIGH over Spain and NW Africa and deep LOWS over the Atlantic to the NW of the UK will combine to create what some meteorologists call the “blowtorch”. The relative position of HIGH and LOW pressure will funnel Tropical air from the Azores direct to Reigate possibly raising temperatures to 12°C on Tuesday (the big map shows temps for today, Saturday). This effect is sometimes called the “BLOWTORCH” (or hairdryer) because it can bring unseasonably high temperatures and melt snow rapidly across NW Europe (this blowtorch could reach as far as Russia where snowfall has been extreme). Reigate snow will be long gone by Tuesday but the warming effect could still be marked and a big contrast to a week ago when Tuesday temperatures fell to -6°C. Don’t break out the flip-flops just yet! Unfortunately, the blowtorch is unlikely to last more than a day or two at most and, in any case, it will be accompanied by rain and wind which might make it feel fairly unremarkable! Watch the video clip below which shows temperatures rising across the continent and the cold being beaten back as BLOWTORCH blasts through Europe!