As global weather patterns become more unpredictable the World Meteorological Organisation recently forecast another cold winter for the UK. Last year companies were caught out by ‘the beast from the East,’ so make sure your business organises its winter gritting maintenance early.
World Meteorological Organisation and Met Office forecast UK Weather
The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) is forecasting a particularly cold winter for the UK due to the El Nino effect. An El Nino occurs when the Pacific Ocean sea surface temperatures are higher than average. The weather effect is always different across the globe. In previous years we witnessed flooding in tropical areas but in the UK we experienced cold winters.
A spokesperson at the WMO said: ‘Most dynamical and statistical forecast models suggest an imminent warming of the tropical Pacific, reaching a weak El Niño level by the fourth quarter of the year. The chance of El Niño is about 70 per cent, with uncertain strength, as model predictions range from ENSO-neutral to a moderate strength El Niño. Model predictions and expert opinion indicate that El Niño Southern Oscillation conditions are about 70 per cent likely to reach weak El Niño levels by the fourth quarter of 2018 and into the Northern Hemisphere winter 2018-19.’
The Met Office believe that the ENSO cycle is a useful tool in understanding long-range weather forecasting but suggest that it is not the only factor that will determine the UK weather this winter. They give examples such as the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation (QBO) that has a fourteen month pattern of changing winds both easterly and westerly along the equator that can change the force of the jet stream.
Peter Boniface, Operations Manager, Clearway Gritting, St Albans, Hertfordshire said:
‘We are aware of the WMO predictions for an exceptionally cold winter for the United Kingdom, and at Clearway Gritting we are our organising our winter gritting maintenance schedule to take account of this. Last year businesses called us as they were caught out by the severity of the ‘the beast from the East,’ and hadn’t organised any winter gritting for their footpaths, private roads or private car parks. As a result their workers and customers couldn’t get into work when the snowfall was particularly bad. We recommend that all businesses have a contingency plan in place for heavy snowfall and this includes reviewing the services of a winter gritting company. At Clearway Gritting we grit from seven depots in London and the south east and we grit in Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Essex. Although we have experienced a particularly warm autumn, we are being told by weather experts that the Scottish Highlands will have snow before the end of the month. We know from the unpredictability of the global weather patterns how quickly the weather can change so it is best to be prepared. If you would like Clearway Gritting to provide a quotation for your winter gritting requirements please call us now on 01727 851837.’