Forecasters: January, February will be frigid for parts of Britain

After heat waves spanned the globe this summer, scientists say Britain appears headed for one of its coldest winters in recent memory.

Forecasters said the projected average temperature is nearly a full degree colder than the 28-year average between 1981 and 2010. File Photo by John Angelillo

Climatologists at University College London forecast frigid temperatures in January and February, due to a weather phenomenon known as a “beast from the east” — or winter storms produced by easterly winds. Similar storms caused a number of deaths in Britain last year.

In their five-page report, the researchers said the forecast is based on sea temperatures and air pressure across the Atlantic Ocean.

The average temperature in central Britain for January and February is projected to be 39 degrees Fahrenheit — nearly a full degree colder than the average between 1981 and 2010. At 39 degrees, the average would be the coldest for the area since 2013.

“It would also rank January-February 2020 as the seventh coldest winter in the last 30 years, and the 23rd coldest winter since 1953,” said UCL climate prediction team lead Mark Sanders.

Such cold would be a stark difference from the heat waves seen across Europe, the United States and Asia this year.

BySommer Brokaw