Flood warnings as parts of UK face heavy showers and blustery winds

Flood warnings have been issued across parts of the UK as heavy rain and blustery winds are set to bring a weekend washout for many.

The Met Office had 98 flood warnings and 169 alerts in place in England on Saturday morning, adding people should expect “an unsettled day ahead” as rain pushed eastwards.

While brighter spells are set to follow, the forecaster warned there may be heavy showers, some snow in the north and people in Northern Ireland and southern Scotland should be braced for the strongest winds.

Flood defences, including boarding, were deployed in York city centre.

City of York Council said it had taken the measure to keep the area “safe and open” as it urged visitors to plan their journeys in advance.

Rescue workers were seen using a boat to navigate the floodwater in the centre of York after the River Ouse burst its banks.

The Met Office issued a yellow warning for wind and rain, running until early on Sunday, across south-western parts of Scotland and the far north of Northern Ireland as gusts of up to 70mph could hit the coastline.

The forecaster said: “Westerly winds will increase across western Scotland and northern parts of Northern Ireland later this afternoon and evening with gusts of 45-55 mph inland and 60-70 mph around the coast, easing later this evening.

Winter weather Jan 14th 2023
Rescue workers use a boat to navigate the floodwater in the centre of York after the River Ouse burst its banks. (Danny Lawson/PA)

“A band of persistent and occasionally heavy rain will extend south across warning area during this period, and combined with saturated ground may lead to some flooding.”

A yellow warning for ice covering much of Scotland and the north-west and north-east of England suggests there could be “icy surfaces and high-ground snow leading to some difficult travelling conditions in places on Saturday night and Sunday morning”, the Met Office added.

Expected “frequent wintry” snow showers have also seen the Met Office issue a yellow warning for snow and ice for northern Scotland from Sunday through to Wednesday.

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The Met Office said: “A few centimetres of snow are likely at low levels over a given 24-hour period, with the potential for 10-15cm above 200 metres, especially across parts of the Highlands. Ice will be additional hazard, especially Tuesday night.”

Residents are urged to take care as there may be some icy patches on some untreated roads, pavements and cycle paths and some roads and railways are likely to be affected with longer journey times by road, bus and train services.