Extreme Storm Ciarán to slam Europe with violent winds, flooding rain

A rapidly-intensifying storm will batter northwest Europe Wednesday and Thursday, unleashing severe winds, heavy rainfall and flooding. The U.K. Met Office has named the system “Ciarán” and it is expected to hit Britain and France particularly hard while its southern fringe will also affect Spain, Portugal and other parts of southern and central Europe.

Want to know how your actions can help make a difference for our planet? Sign up for the Climate Coach newsletter, in your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday. Amber warnings — the second highest level — have been hoisted for Northern Ireland, western Wales and southern England. In Ireland, the concern was for up to 4 inches of rainfall causing flooding before Ciarán arrives. Southern parts of the United Kingdom are bracing for strong winds gusting between 65 and 80 mph.

“Very strong northwesterly winds associated with Storm Ciarán could disrupt travel, utilities and may cause some structural damage,” the Met Office warned.In France, the situation is even more serious — a rare “sting jet” could blast the northwest coastline with winds gusting 90 to 100 mph. It’s a setup that historically has been responsible for some of Europe’s most damaging windstorms.The powerful storm will qualify as a “bomb cyclone” because of its swift strengthening. headtopics.com

That low pressure zone will explosively strengthen, powered by an unusually strong jet stream racing across the Atlantic. Like a conveyor belt, it’s helping aircraft achieve speedsStrong winds carried by the jet stream will cross the Atlantic this week, moving from the Northeastern US to Western Europe. This area will develop into StormThe faster the storm strengthens, the lower its air pressure drops.

Ciarán’s central pressure could drop to a very deep 954 hPa near London on Thursday. The lower the pressure, the stormier the weather overall.Up to 3 to 4 inches, or up to about 100 millimeters, of rain are expected in western Wales and west central England. The remainder of the U.K. will see an inch or two of rain. Localized flooding is possible.Northwest portions of the Iberian Peninsula and western Spain could pick up 2 or 3 inches of rain. headtopics.com

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