Zooming Around with Zoe: United Kingdom’s first winter storm, Arwen

Zooming Around With Zoe

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – The first winter storm of the season ravaged the United Kingdom on the last weekend of November or Thanksgiving weekend for us Americans.

Most of Europe has seen a relatively mild and calm autumn season so far. But, on November 26, things quickly took a turn as a deep low-pressure system began slowly moving toward and impacting the United Kingdom. Leading up to Arwen’s arrival, Britain’s weather service issued a red alert for only the 11th time since 2011, warning that flying debris may lead to injury, damage to buildings and powerlines. 

As the storm swept through, hurricane-force wind gusts were felt across the UK as 98 mph gusts were observed in Brizlee Wood England, 87 mph in Northern Ireland, and up to 78 mph in Scotland. 

These winds proved to be fatal, with three people killed over Thanksgiving weekend by falling trees. At least 300,000 people were left without power as snow plastered the region. Anywhere from 4-6 feet fell in higher terrain, even more in some locations. This stranded 61 people in a pub in Yorkshire, England for three full days before they were finally able to leave. 

Arwen also brought a huge temperature drop, with many spots over 10 degrees below average. In fact in Sweden, temperatures got down to –35 degrees F, the coldest the country has seen in over 30 years. 

Eastern North Carolina has seen a relatively mild and dry fall season so far, and luckily we haven’t seen any winter storms so far this year. But, who knows what the rest of the year may have in store.

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