First named storm of the season, and one of the few named storms of 2023, will affect many regions of the UK and Ireland tomorrow.
Strong winds and heavy rain are set to batter the UK as Agnes sweeps across the country, says the Met Office.
2023 has been an unusually quiet year when it comes to severe storms. Storm Otto, which was not named by the UK Met Offic but rather by the Danish Meteorological Institute, hit Scotland and north-east England in February 2023 but the weather has been fairly calm since then. Especially when compared to most previous years.
Since the current naming scheme started in 2016, between five and ten named storms have hit the UK each winter. Who can forget Storm Eunice in February 2022, the worst storm in a generation? Plus, too many others to name.
So, what’s been going on with the weather this year?
Variable UK weather
Chance can always play a role, particularly in the case of UK weather.
A narrow band of strong winds in the upper atmosphere, known as the jet stream, steers storms that originate over the North Atlantic towards Europe and the UK. But the jet stream itself is naturally very variable and can shift in position and strength. This can cause the UK’s weather to vary a lot from year to year.
The upshot is that, although 2023 has been very quiet, chances are next year could be very different. Storm Agnes may be the first of many severe storms this winter to cause damage and mayhem.
So be prepared! Hold on to your hats – and your fence posts.