Hurricane Dorian has unleashed devastation across the Bahamas, claiming at least one life, destroying homes and sending residents running for their lives. The US states of Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina have all declared states of emergency as the storm heads for the coast. But the intensity of this massive storm could have an unexpected impact on the UK.
The exact impact of the hurricane on the UK’s weather patterns remains to be seen, but a few favourites are emerging.
The storm could push the jet stream up, clearing the path for the remnants of Dorian to hit the UK with wet, windy weather.
But forecasters – and the bookies – are beginning to favour another outcome: that the storm would lead to a heatwave.
John Hammond, a meteorologist for Weather trending, said: “The bottom line is that by week two of September, this storm will have as yet unpredictable results for our weather.
“In the past, when ex-hurricanes have ‘jolted’ our jet stream, the impacts have ranged from disruptive wind and rain on the one hand to heatwaves on the other.
“I would not discount the prospect of another period of dry and warm weather later in the month.”
However, he added: “With shorter days and a weaker sun, such a spell would not match the heights of heat reached earlier through the summer.”
Meanwhile, the bookies have slashed odds on the hurricane making this the hottest UK September on record.
Ladbrokes have cut odds from 8/1 to just 4/1 on this being the hottest September ever.
Time will tell if this manifests.
According to the Met Office, the forecast for the month remains fairly uncertain.
Met Office meteorologist Craig Snell said: “The five-day track of the storm is uncertain and it all depends on how it interacts with Florida, whether it moves inland or up the east coast of the US.
“If it did move towards the UK we would be looking at mid-September and if there are any repercussions across our neck of the woods, these would not happen until the second week of September.
“Hurricanes can do lots of different things, sometimes they do move up and start to interfere with the jet stream.
“This is just one scenario though, and at this stage it is too early to say exactly what it will do, it will be a case of wait and see.”
The latest long-range Met Office forecast said: “Overall we should expect spells of rain or showers, which could be heavy at times, interspersed with brief periods of quieter and more settled weather.
“A more prolonged spell of settled weather may develop towards the end of September, but there remains a lot of uncertainty in the forecast.
“Temperatures are expected to vary around average for the time of year and, perhaps, become a touch higher than average later in the period.”