Is it going to snow? Met Office predicts when major weather event will hit

When can we expect more of this? <i>(Image: Staff)</i>
When can we expect more of this? (Image: Staff)

WITH the Met Office predicting a major change in the weather everyone is asking: is it going to snow?

So far this winter has been relatively mild, but that could change at the end of this month.

The forecaster says a major Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW) is expected to happen in late February or early March.

And contrary to its name, this could bring a blast of bitterly cold air into the Uk.

In 2018, a major SSW brought the Beast from the East to the UK, as the country saw 22 inches of snowfall in some places.

The Met Office has said: “The latest forecasts are showing that a major SSW is now likely to take place.

York Press: “The recent minor SSW weakened the Stratospheric Polar Vortex and it’s now likely to collapse and reverse in the middle of February.”

The forecaster explained: “A major SSW often makes the jet stream meander more, which can lead to a large area of blocking high pressure over northern Europe, including the UK.

“This blocking high pressure can lead to cold, dry weather in the north of Europe, including the UK, with mild, wet and windy conditions more likely for southern areas of the continent."

However, the forecaster says it is not as simple as meaning that we will be hit by heavy snowfall and cold weather.

And it cautioned: “This is not always the case and impacts on UK weather can also be benign when an SSW occurs.”

Prof Adam Scaife, Head of Long-Range Forecasting at the Met Office, added: “There is now over 80% chance of a major SSW occurring.

"Although the impact will become clearer nearer the time, any effect on UK weather is most likely to occur in late February and March.”

This is the current long range Met Office weather forecast for late February and into early March: “Generally changeable weather conditions with near or above average temperatures across the UK as a whole until late February.

“Bands of rain and strong winds are expected, especially in the northwest, with a risk of some wintry showers in the intervening colder brighter interludes between these frontal systems.

“Some of these frontal systems perhaps spreading further to the southeast, although much of the south and southeast will likely be relatively drier.

“Confidence in the forecast around the turn of the month becomes much lower, and whilst the more likely scenario is one of a continuation of similar conditions experienced through the latter half of February, there is a low probability of some much colder weather developing.”