Heatwave will ease with thundery breakdown for some (2024)

September’s hot weather will continue into the weekend for much of the UK, though there’s an increasing chance of thunderstorms for some.

The official heatwave will continue into the weekend for much of southern England and Wales, with temperatures likely to peak close to 33°C on Saturday, in what could be the hottest day of the year so far.

With 30°C already exceeded today (Friday), the UK has now seen five consecutive days of temperatures above 30°C in September for the first time, with that record likely to continue on Saturday and Sunday.

However, the UK will gradually transition to a cooler air mass in the coming days with an increasingchance of thundery downpours for some, which could lead to further Met Office warnings being issued.

Met Office Chief Meteorologist Paul Gundersen said: “Although much of the UK will see high temperatures and sunny skies continue on Saturday, in what has a possibility of being the hottest day of the year so far, there’s also the potential for some thunderstorms, which has resulted in a Yellow Warning being issued for much of central England and parts of east Wales.

“Temperatures will begin to trend downwards from Saturday in the far northwest of Scotland, with a cold front gradually moving south through the weekend, bringing with it the risk of some heavy and thundery downpours on Sunday as well. However, the southeast will hold on to the high temperatures the longest and could still reach 32C on Sunday.”

Further warnings are likely to be required in the coming days, so it’s important to stay up to date with the latest forecast.

Chris Wilding, Flood Duty Manager at the Environment Agency, said:“Significant surface water flooding is possible but not expected across parts of England on Saturday afternoon and evening due to isolated intense downpours.

“We urge people not to drive through flood water – it is often deeper than it looks and just 30cm of flowing water is enough to float your car.         

“People should check their flood risk, sign up for free flood warnings and keep up to date with the latest situation at https://www.gov.uk/check-if-youre-at-risk-of-flooding or follow @EnvAgency on Twitter for the latest flood updates.”

Air Pollution levels through the weekend will also be moderate or high for much of England and Wales.

As our climate changes due to human influences, hot spells like this are becoming more frequent and severe. By 2070, the chance of exceeding 30°C for two days or more throughout the year increases. Projections show that over southern parts of the UK exceeding 30°C for two days or more becomes sixteen times more frequent than it is today.  

Chance of tropical nights

In addition to high daytime temperatures, it will remain uncomfortably warm overnight, especially in the south, with a chance of tropical nights for some, which is when overnight temperatures remain in excess of 20°C.   

The highest UK overnight minimum temperature for September on record is 21.7°C, and this record could be threatened in the coming nights.The Met Office previously completed an attribution study examining the influence of human induced climate change on tropical nights in the UK, which is explored in this newly-published blog.

Heat Health Alert 

The UK Health Security Agency, which provides alerts for the health and social care sector in England, has issued an Amber Heat Health Alert which highlights increased risks to those more vulnerable to heat.

The Met Office has not issued an Extreme Heat Warning, which covers the UK and aligns with the wider national severe weather warning service and looks at more widespread potential impacts for the public.   

Help to protect the vulnerable people that you know including older people, those with underlying conditions and those who live alone; they may need support to keep cool and hydrated. For more advice click here.   

Further ahead

By the early part of next week, a return to westerly weather regime, with a mix of sunshine, showers and some windy conditions is most likely, with temperatures returning towards average for the time of year.

You can check the latest forecast on our website, by following us on Twitter and Facebook, as well as on our mobile app which is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from the Google Play store. Keep track of current weather warnings on the weather warning page.  

Heatwave will ease with thundery breakdown for some (2024)


What is the best way to survive heatwave? ›

Keep cool: use air conditioning or a fan, wear light and loose-fitting clothing, and keep skin wet, using a spray bottle or damp sponge and by taking cool showers. Stay hydrated: during days of extreme heat, keep drinking water before you feel thirsty, especially if outdoors or performing physical activity.

How long do heatwaves last? ›

Heat Safety Resources

A heat wave is a period of abnormally hot weather generally lasting more than two days. Heat waves can occur with or without high humidity.

How can you be safe in extreme hot weather? ›

Take cool showers or baths.
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Use your oven less to help reduce the temperature in your home.
  • If you're outside, find shade. ...
  • Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.
  • Avoid high-energy activities or work outdoors, during midday heat, if possible.
Mar 21, 2024

What is the relationship between heat waves and wildfires? ›

Heat can exacerbate drought, and hot, dry conditions can in turn create wildfire conditions.

Can you survive in 100 degree heat? ›

Yes, but not for too long. Some people like their saunas 100° even though that is quite hot. As long as you've drank enough, you could survive for maybe 15 minutes without damage. Any longer would probably cause harm but would only be lethal after 45min or more.

How do you stay cool in 100 degree weather? ›

Everyone should take these steps to prevent heat-related illnesses, injuries, and death during hot weather:
  1. Stay in an air-conditioned indoor location as much as you can.
  2. Drink plenty of fluids even if you don't feel thirsty.
  3. Schedule outdoor activities carefully. ...
  4. Take cool showers or baths to cool down.

Can heat waves cause thunderstorms? ›

Warm temperatures allow the atmosphere to hold more humidity, and that humidity is a prerequisite for building clouds—specifically, the tall, menacing cumulonimbus clouds that produce thunder and lightning.

Will summer 2024 be as hot as summer 2023? ›

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration projects that “it is virtually certain” that 2024 will rank among the 10 warmest years on record and gives 2024 a 55 percent chance of topping 2023 as the warmest year.

What was the worst heatwave in human history? ›

July 1743 heatwave in China - Beijing reached 44.4 °C (111.9 °F) on July 25, higher than any modern records. 11,400 people reportedly died. July 1757 heatwave – Europe, hottest summer in Europe since 1540 and until 2003. 1896 Eastern North America heat wave – killed 1,500 people in August 1896.

What is the highest temperature a person can withstand? ›

Externally, the upper limit of the human body's thermoneutral zone—the ambient temperature range in which the body can maintain effectively maintain its temperature and equilibrium—likely falls somewhere between 104 and 122 degrees Fahrenheit, according to a 2021 study published in Physiology Report.

How hot is too hot for humans? ›

What is the heat index?
ClassificationHeat IndexEffect on the body
Danger103°F - 124°FHeat cramps or heat exhaustion likely, and heat stroke possible with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity
Extreme Danger125°F or higherHeat stroke highly likely
2 more rows

Should you stay inside during a heatwave? ›

Take Steps to Stay Cool

If your area is experiencing extreme heat, stay in air-conditioned spaces as much as possible, especially during the warmest parts of the day, typically 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (PDF). And don't underestimate how hot it can get indoors without AC.

Why is it so hot this year? ›

A range of factors — including general warming due to human-caused climate change, the El Niño climate pattern, record-low Antarctic sea ice and others — contributed to 2023's record-breaking heat, but they don't tell the full story. Schmidt said more work has to be done to fully understand why the year was so hot.

What is causing the heat wave? ›

Heat waves begin with a high-pressure system (also known as an anticyclone), where atmospheric pressure above an area builds up. That creates a sinking column of air that compresses, heats up, and oftentimes dries out.

Can a heat wave start a fire? ›

But can fires really ignite spontaneously at high air temperatures? High temperatures alone do not trigger forest fires. The combination of intense heat and prolonged drought only sets the stage for fires to start more easily - especially when an ignition source is present.

How do you survive 50 degree heat? ›

At 50 degrees heat and 50% relative air humidity, the rise in metabolic rate was accompanied by a 1 degree rise in core temperature, suggesting that this is the point where the body can no longer dissipate heat. If you feel dizzy, sick or faint in the heat, don't push through– find a cool, shaded place and drink water.

Does keeping a bucket of water in room cool? ›

Keeping a bucket containing water will certainly cool down the surrounding air. * The water will evaporate over time - in order to move from liquid to gas it needs to gain energy, and it does this by taking some of the heat energy out of the surrounding air.

What should I do in a heatwave? ›

Have cold food and drinks, avoid alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks, and have a cool shower or put cool water on your skin or clothes. Keep your living space cool. Close windows during the day and open them at night when the temperature outside has gone down. Electric fans can help if the temperature is below 35 degrees.

What should you avoid in a heatwave? ›

Heat wave: Do's & Dont's
  • Avoid going out in the sun, especially between 12.00 noon and 3.00 p.m.
  • Drink sufficient water and as often as possible, even if not thirsty.
  • Wear lightweight, light-coloured, loose, and porous cotton clothes. ...
  • Avoid strenuous activities when the outside temperature is high.


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Annamae Dooley

Last Updated:

Views: 6414

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (65 voted)

Reviews: 88% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Annamae Dooley

Birthday: 2001-07-26

Address: 9687 Tambra Meadow, Bradleyhaven, TN 53219

Phone: +9316045904039

Job: Future Coordinator

Hobby: Archery, Couponing, Poi, Kite flying, Knitting, Rappelling, Baseball

Introduction: My name is Annamae Dooley, I am a witty, quaint, lovely, clever, rich, sparkling, powerful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.