Freezing fog to cause travel chaos as UK braces for ‘coldest week of the season’

Britain will shiver through 'one of the coldest weeks of the year' as it is hit by freezing fog and sub-zero conditions.

Temperatures are expected to plunge to as low as -6C overnight in some parts, which could result in travel chaos for road, rail and air travellers.

Met Office forecasters have put a yellow warning in place for tonight and early tomorrow over the threat of potentially dangerous 'freezing fog'.

It reads: “Fog or freezing fog is likely to lead to some travel disruption on Monday night and Tuesday morning.”

Weather experts say the condition will result in “slower journey times with delays to bus and train services possible” as well as “a chance of delays or cancellations to flights”.


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This warning is in effect between 00.15am and 11am on Thursday across parts of the south-east.

Air passengers could see lengthy delays to their journeys as airports put cold weather plans in place.

The Met Office said: “Fog, snow, ice and crosswinds mean that air traffic controllers have to increase the gap between planes that are landing, reducing the number of aircraft that an airport can manage.

“The same weather can make it slower and more difficult for the planes to taxi between runway and terminal building.”

It added: “An aircraft that’s stood overnight in freezing weather will need de-icing before its first flight in the morning.

“That’s a fairly big task for one plane but imagine the task at Heathrow on a snowy January morning.

“At the same time, there are miles of taxiways and runways to clear.

Authorities have warned travellers to plan their journeys and leave plenty of extra time in case of delays.

The frosty weather comes after Brits saw lows of -10.3C on Saturday night, the chilliest weather since February, the said.

Met Office meteorologist Alex Burkhill said: “It is probably the coldest period of this autumn/winter but the latter part of winter earlier this year has seen colder.

“At the beginning of the year, we had temperatures falling to -6C in Devon and less so Cornwall – about -3C.

“It will be similarly cold to that to be honest, so definitely one of the coldest weeks of the year.”

He added: “Temperatures will be as cold as -5C or -6C across Devon and -4C in Cornwall on Monday night.

“The next couple of days we will see lows of -4C or -5C most nights.

“It is not until Thursday into Friday that it will be much milder so there are lots of cold, frosty nights to come.

“Even by day, temperatures will struggle.”

Much of northern Britain cloudy, breezy and frost-free, rain dying out. Central areas dry and cold, southern parts dry and frosty, probably with quite widespread fog developing.

Tuesday:

Southern districts starting frosty and foggy; only a slow improvement, some places perhaps staying misty and very cold. Further north, mostly dry with variable cloud but drizzly in far north.

Outlook for Wednesday to Friday:

Cold with fog for the south on Wednesday, windy with showers in the north. Mild and windy with rain moving south Thursday, clearing Friday to bright or sunny spells.

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