UK recorded new rainfall record in October

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Saturday October 3, 2020, has been confirmed as the wettest day on record since 1891 for UK-wide rainfall. It received the greatest rainfall in any single day averaged out across the UK, beating the previous record from 1986.

Dr Mark McCarthy, head of the UK’s Met Office National Climate Information Centre, said, “In climate statistics, 2019 will be remembered for possessing the UK’s hottest day, whereas 2020 will be associated with rainfall records. Saturday 3 October – the day which followed Storm Alex – currently holds the record for the UK’s wettest day in a daily series stretching back to 1891 – that’s over 47,000 days.

“The rainfall was very widespread resulting in average rainfall across the entire UK of 31.7mm, or to put it another way, if expressed as the volume of rain, that is more than the capacity of Loch Ness – the largest lake in the UK by volume at 7.4km3 of water. It is exceptional to have 30mm to 50mm or more of rain falling so extensively across the UK – from the south coast of England to the north coast of Scotland – in a single day”. The previous record was 29.8mm on August 25, 1986.

Generally, the start to October (1-13) has been very wet with the early provisional statistics showing the UK overall has seen 68% of its average rainfall for the month of October and England has been the wettest with 87% of its monthly average, in particular, southeast and central southern England already reaching 110%.

Commenting further on 2020, McCarthy added, “Remarkably, 2020 also has the UK’s third wettest day on 15th February with 27.2mm, from named storm Dennis during what then became the wettest February on record.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he is responsible for content across UKI Media & Events' portfolio of websites while also writing for the company's print titles.

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