Thunderstorms to strike UK on hottest day of the year so far


eavy showers and thunderstorms are set to batter parts of the UK on the hottest day of the year so far.

The Met Office has issued new amber thunderstorm warnings for parts of south-eastern England between 4pm and 7pm on Tuesday.

Forecasters warn of water spray, sudden flooding and lightning strikes, which could lead to power cuts, damage to buildings and delays to public transport.

(PA Graphics) / PA Graphics

It comes as the UK recorded its hottest day of the year so far, after the temperature reached 32.2C (89.96F) at Heathrow Airport in west London on Tuesday afternoon.

The previous high for the year was 31.6C, which was also recorded at Heathrow on Sunday.

An amber extreme heat warning is also set to last until Friday, with the mercury expected to climb as high as 33C in parts of the country.

The thunderstorms could echo the flooding witnessed last week in London and the South East, which affected several Underground stations.

Dan Stroud, a Met Office forecaster, told the PA news agency: “We have issued some new amber thunderstorm warnings for parts of south-east London, down to parts of Essex and Kent.

“There is also one in place for areas surrounding Cambridgeshire.

“We’re seeing some fairly heavy showers developing during the afternoon along with reports of lightning and hail.

“There will be some intense spells of heavy rainfall as the afternoon develops and some slow-moving downpours, some places will see it, others won’t at all.

“There may be some localised flooding issues as a fair amount of rain will fall – meaning possible delays to public transport, power cuts and potentially surface flooding.”

Thunderstorms and rain have hit parts of south-eastern England (Hannah Carre/PA) / PA Media

Mr Stroud said the recent spell of hot weather has drawn in moist air to eastern parts of the country, which is causing the downpours.

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