Climate expert from University of Sussex says UK is 'not ready' for extreme weather events

WATCH: Dr Melissa Lazenby from the University of Sussex discusses extreme weather events

With Storm Ciarán about to hit across the South, a climate expert from the University of Sussex has said that urgent action is required so that the UK is better prepared for more extreme weather events in the future.

Climate change lecturer Dr Melissa Lazenby said the pace of change needs to accelerate.

Dr Lazenby said: I don't think the UK is at the point where it's ready for all the extreme events we're already seeing, whether it be heat waves or... winter storms.

"We really need to put in a lot more... flood defences. There is a lot of talk about money that's going to be put into these infrastructures to improve the ability to weather these storms but that needs to happen a lot more rapidly."

"I don't think I can emphasise how quickly (these changes) need to happen."

Dr Melissa Lazenby said the UK needs to be more prepared for extreme weather events Credit: ITV News Meridian

As well as calling for more funding, Dr Lazenby added that there are some steps individuals can take to help guard against flooding, including making sure their gutters are empty.

And Dr Lazenby has warned that Storm Ciarán will not be a one-off.

"Especially going forward, our climate projections are showing that we are going to get higher wind speeds associated with storms (and) more rainfall in shorter periods of time", she said.

Organisations across the South have already begun to take action ahead of Storm Ciarán, with many schools closed.

National Highways has issued a severe weather event warning to drivers across the South East.

Marwell Zoo has also announced that it will be closed tomorrow (Thursday) as a 'precautionary measure'.

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