Weather warning in place as Yorkshire and Lincolnshire braced for cold snap

icy falls
Widespread sub-zero temperatures are forecast (image shows Smeltmill Beck in February 2021). Credit: Phill Rodham

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for ice in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire this week. ITV Calendar's weather presenter Kerrie Gosney explains what it means.

What is happening with the weather?

Over the past week we've had a rather chilly easterly airflow - giving a significant windchill for coastal areas and some cloudy, damp conditions over our region.

From Tuesday, a more direct northerly flow takes over – originating from the Arctic – and this will drift southwards down across the UK during the coming days.

It will be the first notable prolonged cold spell since February 2021.

Cold air is being brought in from the Arctic.

What are the main concerns?

Although many people are understandably getting excited (and possibly concerned) about snow, our main hazards – at least in the shorter term – are the low temperatures, which will be prolonged by day and by night, as well as widespread frosts developing over the coming nights, which will lead to slippery surfaces.

There is also the potential for ice warnings where any moisture from showers off the North Sea will freeze.

How cold will it get?

Overnight lows are expected to drop to between -5C to -8C. And it's in these sub-zero areas where temperatures will struggle to reach above freezing even by day, by the time we reach the end of the week.

It means that car windscreens will need thawing out, outdoor water pipes will need insulating and particular attention will be needed to keeping vulnerable people and pets warm.

Temperatures will fall well below zero.

But it's not all bad news. Overall we're looking at mainly dry, sunny or clear conditions this week - with a big dollop and crisp winter sunshine - a welcome change from last week's gloomy weather.

The clear skies will allow for temperatures to dip further by night - and this looks likely to continue across our region for several days.

Where will it snow?

We're not currently expecting any widespread snow.

But as the air mass turns colder, coastal showers are more likely to turn to sleet and snow from midweek.

The highest risk of settling snow for our part of the world is initially over the North York Moors, and a light dusting is possible here - maybe over 5cm by Thursday morning.

The snow risk remains under close review, as anything wet from Wednesday onwards is likely to turn wintry. But these will arrive in the form of showers, should be well scattered and will not affect everyone.

Our main headache is Thursday. Remaining cold with coastal wintry showers perhaps moving a little inland during the afternoon and overnight period, falling wintry with maybe some hail and thunder.

Warnings and advice

Frosty, icy weather means extra time is needed for journeys by car and by foot.

Cold weather - day on day - can have serious health implications for the vulnerable.

The latest weather warnings can be found here.

Not a weather warning as such, but the Met Office and the UK Health Security Agency have issued a cold weather alert from 6pm Wednesday until 9am Monday. It means health risks to vulnerable patients could increase and services could face disruption. 

How long will the cold spell last?

Our latest forecast charts keep us in the cold air for at least a week. There seems little likelihood of any milder air breaking through until at least the middle of next week and perhaps not even for some time after that.

A prolonged cold spell is never good news for people who are struggling to heat their homes. But the positives are increased amounts of sunshine during the day and with no widespread rain or snow - a zero flood risk.

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