Hercules 2 'The Return'. Gales, torrential rain and vast waves to hit this weekend: UPDATE (From Falmouth Packet)
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Hercules 2 'The Return'. Gales, torrential rain and vast waves to hit this weekend: UPDATE
Updated 3:29pm Friday 31st January 2014 in News
The Cornish coast is set for another pummeling today and through the weekend as the next storm barrels towards the county in a repeat of the massive 'Hercules' storm of January 6.
The Met Office is warning of heavy rain and gale force winds spreading eastwards across Cornwall and Devon on Friday and Saturday, with a 'Yellow Alert' for rain and wind now upgraded to 'Amber'.
Wave forecasting gurus Magic Seaward are warning that surfers keen on grabbing a wave will need to find deep shelter, with waves forecast to push towards 30ft@19 seconds in Cornwall coupled with 60mph winds.
The website (www.magicseaweed.com) says that both storms "offer big black blobs on the swell chart just west of the United Kingdom", but that there are differences.
It adds: "Hercules began life on the US East Coast, rapidly intensifying as it moved out of Canadian waters and it grew into a monster spanning the whole North Atlantic. Pushing east at the perfect speed to continue to build energy into the swell it was characterised not just by huge peak sea heights, but by an incredible peak period and consistent, sustained winds.
"In a similar fashion this latest storm starts life in the fertile breeding ground of the Gulf of Mexico on the front between colder Northern air and warm air rising over the Gulf. But unlike Hercules this storm remains unexceptional as it moves on a steady north easterly track into the middle of the Atlantic where it then undergoes a similar rapid deepening.
"Somewhat unusually during this period of explosive cyclogenesis the storm is forecast to turn to move south east bringing the bulk of the swell towards the Bay of Biscay, rather than Northern Scotland as might be more typical.
"As a result we see exceptional swell coupled with moderate to gale force westerly winds across Atlantic facing European coasts. For the United Kingdom there are, again, legitimate reasons for concern. Waves forecast to push towards 30ft@19 seconds in Cornwall coupled with 60mph winds and once again huge spring tides are a recipe for more incidents of coastal damage and flooding."
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The Met Office says that a further area of heavy rain will spread eastwards across the UK on Friday, clearing during the early hours of Saturday. As much as 20-30 mm of rain will fall quite widely, with around 40 mm on some high ground in the southwest of England.
The heavy rain will be accompanied by strong to gale force winds.
The public should be aware of possible disruption, primarily due to further flooding, chiefly in areas already, or recently, affected.
While the heavy rain should clear on Saturday and Sunday, winds will increase. Gusts of around 50-60 mph, and up to 70 mph in exposed parts will see large waves that could overtop coastlines.
The wild weather is due to yet another very deep area of low pressure heading in from the SW. The deep Atlantic low will move north close to western parts of the UK on Saturday.
The Met Office chief forecaster said: "Associated very strong winds together with bands of squally showers will affect many parts but particularly western areas. The combination of strong winds, large waves and high tides will lead to hazardous conditions at times in some coastal areas. Winds will ease from the south later on Saturday but remain strong in the north into early Sunday."
There is also a flood risk for Saturday and Sunday. The Environment agency says that high tides, a storm surge, strong winds and large waves bring a medium overall flood risk for coastal communities along the north coasts of Devon and Cornwall on Saturday, adding that significant disruption is possible
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