Weather tracker: above-average temperatures to follow deep freeze in US

Rapid change in conditions could lead to flooding as snow quickly melts

During the lead-up to Christmas, temperatures in the US remained subfreezing for several days, leading to some deep snow accumulations. Although many people had a white Christmas, loved ones were kept apart due to road closures and cancelled flights as people were advised to stay at home.

Power outages affected multiple states, leaving many without electricity or heating and making contact with friends and family even more difficult over the festive period.

Thankfully, this cold spell is coming to an end, as temperatures are expected to rise to about 5C above average across much of the central US by midweek. This fast change in conditions is linked to a combination of a northerly shift in the jet stream, a change in the position of the low-pressure system that was sitting across eastern Canada over the past week or so, and south-westerly surface winds bringing warmer air poleward from the Gulf of Mexico.

However, the speed of the change in temperatures may lead to some localised flooding, as snow accumulations begin to melt, creating further hazards and obstacles for locals and the emergency services to end the year.

Parts of Europe are also forecast to experience some warmer-than-average conditions over the new year period. Like the US, there will be a northwards shift in the jet stream, which, accompanied by a large area of high pressure over the Mediterranean, will allow warmer, tropical air to take hold over most of the continent.

By the last few days of 2022, temperatures are widely expected to be around 5C above the seasonal norm, apart from northern Scotland, and parts of southern Norway and Sweden, which may be slightly chillier than the climatological average. Parts of France, Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic are expected to have the greatest temperature anomalies, in excess of 10C above average, which in real terms would mean temperatures reaching the mid to high teens. This will come as a big contrast to the Arctic conditions of only a week or so ago.

Faye Hulton (Metdesk)

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Weather tracker: Storm Ciarán and Louisiana superfog cause chaos
The Channel Islands bore the brunt of a record-breaking storm, while a crash in the US involved 168 vehicles

James Parrish and Matt Andrews (Metdesk)

03, Nov, 2023 @10:42 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: Nigeria flooding and US blows hot and cold
Authorities partly blamed after months of deadly flooding in African nation; jet stream causes temperature divide in US

Nicholas Lee for MetDesk

21, Oct, 2022 @8:00 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: Storm Hilary brings floods to US west coast and inland
Several landlocked states including Nevada and Idaho see highest rainfall totals from a tropical storm since 1900

Azure Prior for MetDesk

25, Aug, 2023 @9:36 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: unseasonably warm October across Europe breaks records
Above-average temperatures across northern hemisphere came amid an extremely warm year for Britain

Matt Andrews for MetDesk

07, Nov, 2022 @9:38 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: high pressure drags cold Arctic air towards UK
Wintry conditions will arrive this week, with temperatures plummeting and possibility of snow showers

Faye Hulton for MetDesk

05, Dec, 2022 @11:53 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: looking back as summer ends in northern hemisphere
The season was a mixed bag in Britain, but Japan has had its hottest summer on record

James Parrish (MetDesk)

04, Sep, 2023 @9:17 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: temperatures set to plunge across US states
Arctic airmass heading south, reaching Texas and even Florida, with some areas facing temperatures of up to 45 degrees below normal

James Parrish and Alice Fowle (Metdesk)

19, Dec, 2022 @7:42 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: heat dome raises temperatures in Spain and Portugal
Phenomenon is forecast to expand as it strengthens, triggering conditions of more than 30C in parts of Europe

Lauren Herdman for MetDesk

10, Jul, 2023 @9:49 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: deadly rainstorm hits Crete
At least two people dead on Greek island after torrential rain. Elsewhere, cold snap grips swathe of US

Andrew Stewart for MetDesk

17, Oct, 2022 @9:50 AM

Article image
Weather tracker: 385 tornadoes in US already this year
Number likely to increase this week as upper-level low travels east across country and low pressure moves north-east

Lauren Herdman (Metdesk)

03, Apr, 2023 @6:48 PM