Britons are bracing themselves for severe weather conditions set to lash parts of the country with rain and 100mph winds today.
The Met Office has issued a yellow wind warning across much of England and Scotland, with strong gusts expected and likely to cause delays for rush-hour commuters.
The UK is likely to avoid Storm Brendan despite weather warnings for wind remaining in place for parts of the country, the Met Office has said.
The South West of England and Wales were hit with gales of up to 70mph over the weekend after Storm Atiyah first hit Ireland on Sunday.
Alex Burkill, Met Office Meteorologist said Tuesday was going to be a ‘wet and windy’ day for most of the UK but they were not expecting a second storm.
Strong winds have already brought down this tree in Taunton, Somerset. The council tweeted a picture of the scene
The Met Office has issued a yellow wind warning across much of England and Scotland, with very strong gusts expected – potentially causing transport delays
It was previously thought that Tuesday would bring Storm Brendan to the shores of the UK but the Met Office said there will not be enough of an impact from Tuesday’s winds to warrant a storm name.
Mr Burkill said: ‘Many parts of the UK, particularly in the North West, will get off to a wet and windy start.’
Two weather warnings are in place for wind across the north of England and southern Scotland, as well as rain across the west of Scotland.
Mr Burkill continued: ‘In that warning, we talk about rain of between 20mm and 40 mm, and perhaps up to 60 mm across the western part of Scotland.
‘The greatest impacts from the winds look to be from southern Scotland, Northern Ireland, northern Wales and northern England, so quite a big patch.
‘We can see gusts of 50 to 60 miles per hour up to 70 in parts.
‘Despite the wind and rain, it is going to be a remarkably mild day. There will be highs of 13C (55.4F) to 14C (57.2F) and that is quite a few degrees above average.’
Mr Burkill added that the worst of the rain will clear over the next two days, but most places will see ‘quite a drop’ in temperature between Tuesday and Wednesday.
Temperatures will sink to 9C (48.2F) on Wednesday, a drop of about 4C (7.2F) from today’s expected temperature.
Commuters today have been warned of strong winds (left) on a day when temperatures will struggle to get to double figures
Mr Burkill also gave a forecast ahead of Thursday’s General Election.
‘It looks like there will be wind and rain for most places,’ he said, adding that central and southern parts of England were most likely to be hit with the rain.
Small amounts of sleet and snow are also expected in the highest parts of Scotland, with highest national temperatures of between 10C (50F) and 11C (51.8F).
The Needles on the Isle of Wight has already been hit by 83mph gusts as the south west and Wales were buffered by gales after the storm swept in from Ireland, where it disrupted transport and power networks.
Will the severe weather affect election turnout?
The prospect of the first winter election since 1974 has led to speculation that conditions could affect turnout, although suggest that the weather has little impact.
A 2007 University of Chicago study found voter turnout decreased by 1 per cent for every extra inch of rain. But research in 2013 from Gothenburg University in Sweden found no link between rain and turnout.
Another study by Oxford University found no connection between weather and how many people voted. Instead, it concluded how close the election race was and how clear the differences were between the parties’ policies was more likely to have an influence.
Polls show the Tory lead over Labour has narrowed to eight points, while Brexit remains the defining issue when voters make their decision in three days’ time.
Speaking before the 2017 General Election, Stephen Fisher, an associate professor of political sociology at Oxford University, said: ‘There’s basically no correlation between the weather and turnout.’
Chris Curtis, political manager at YouGov, said: ‘Most of the evidence shows that weather actually has quite a small effect on turnout and factors such as how close the election is perceived to be and how different the parties’ positions are normally have more of an impact.’
The weather for the February 1974 election was bad but turnout was 79 per cent, compared to 71 per cent for Labour’s ‘landslide’ victory in May 1997 when temperatures were in the mid-20s.
Four years later, turnout was just 59 per cent – attributed to a comfortable Labour win being expected and policies that were not particularly distinct from the Conservatives’.
Forecasters said delays are likely to road, rail, air and ferry transport, and that short-term loss of power is possible in some areas. The M48 Severn Bridge introduced lane closures yesterday due to increasing wind speeds.
Western Power Distribution said it had experienced 26 high voltage faults in the south-west on Sunday and two in Wales, leading to 5,500 customers being cut off from power over the course of the day.
In the South West, Coastsafe, a partnership campaign aiming to improve coastline safety, urged people to be wary of tidal surges and debris being thrown over sea walls during the storm.
By Thursday, parts of the UK could be drenched by close to an inch of rain in the 24-hour period covering election day. Areas along the west coast of England and Scotland are due heavy showers and blustery wind.
The band of showers moving across the country on Thursday will deposit around a third of an inch of rain throughout the day in most of England and Wales, although East Anglia should be largely dry.
Temperatures will be -3C (27F) in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, when polling stations open at 7am, with -1C (30F) in the north and 0C (32F) in the south.
Daytime highs will reach 11C (52F) in Plymouth, 5C (41F) in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and 7C in Glasgow (45F). Mrs Smith advised voters: ‘Wrap up warm and take waterproofs and an umbrella.’
High winds put paid to sailings between Ardrossan and Brodick, Barra to Eriskay, Oban to Castlebay, Tayinloan to Gigha, Tarbert to Portavadie and all services from Mallaig.
Met Office figures show 3in (78.4mm) of rain fell at Achnagart in Ross-shire, between midday on Saturday and midday yesterday. By contrast, only 2in (56mm) fell in Ross and Cromarty during most of November.
** Have you taken any photographs of the windy weather today? Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org **
Storm Atiyah helps UK smash wind power record – generating 16 gigawatts of energy in just half on hour and accounting for HALF of all the electricity in the country on Sunday
By Joe Pinkstone for MailOnline
Storm Atiyah swept across the UK at the weekend and caused severe disruption, but the National Grid has now revealed it helped the UK set a new wind power record.
Wind farms generated more than 16 gigawatts of power in Britain during a half hour window for the first time on Sunday evening, official figures reveal.
That equates to five times the output expected from the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant.
Over the day as a whole, wind supplied 43.7 per cent of British electricity due to strong gusts, while nuclear generated 20.5 per cent, gas supplied 12.8 per cent and biomass 7.9 per cent.
The British grid also got 7.4 per cent of its power from imports, 3.1 per cent from coal and smaller amounts from hydro, solar, storage and other sources.
The maximum output was recorded between 5pm and 5:30pm GMT.
Wind farms generated more than 16 gigawatts of power in Britain for the first time on Sunday evening, figures revealed. Over the day as a whole, wind supplied 43.7 per cent of British electricity due to strong gusts (file photo)
Industry body RenewableUK’s Luke Clark said: ‘This new British clean energy record is a great early Christmas present, and shows just how important wind is in an energy system that’s changing rapidly.
‘On a dark cold Sunday when we need it most, wind was providing more than 40 per cent of our power, far more than any other source of electricity.
‘Wind energy is at the heart of our modern power system, enabling us to take practical action against dangerous climate change’.
The previous wind energy record of 15.32 gigawatts was set on February 8 this year.
ESO and National grid tweeted about the landmark moment, which marks the first time wind power has topped 16 gigawatts in a half hour period in Britain
Extra power on the network on Sunday meant National Grid paid some households to use electricity, as it was cheaper than paying the operators of wind turbines to stop them generating.
At one point on Sunday night, customers on Octopus Energy’s agile pricing tariff got as much as 5p per unit of power.
Their smart meters would have connected up once prices were low.
‘It is remarkable that electric vehicle owners on such tariffs would have been paid to charge their cars,’ said Robert Cheesewright, at Smart Energy GB.
‘At Octopus we are increasingly seeing those on our agile smart meter tariff tweak their daily routines to push their usage into these cheap, off-peak and renewable-heavy hours,’ said Octopus chief executive Greg Jackson.
Experts say that this will become more common as customers charge their cars overnight using cheap, or even free, renewable electricity, and some will sell it back to the grid the next day.