Weather warnings in place for heat, floods and potato blight

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Severe weather warnings are in place for Londonderry and the rest of Northern Ireland until 9pm on Wednesday, with meteorologists asking people to be prepared for flooding, unusual heat and potato blight.

“Whilst most places will miss the worst, please be aware of the risk of localised flash flooding,” forecasters at the Met Office have stated.

“Frequent lightning, large hail and strong winds could be additional hazards. All of this could lead to some flooding of homes, businesses and transport networks. Disruption to power is also possible,” they added.

Meanwhile, a high temperature warning has also been issued by Met Éireann, with the Irish meteorological service warning temperatures would reach values of 27 degrees or higher in many areas on Tuesday.

Met Éireann also warned that the humid weather being experienced across the island favours the spread of potato blight, which notoriously contributed to the Great Famine of the 1840s.

The Chief Forecaster at the Met Office in Devon warned that the weather will remain unpredictable until late on Wednesday and probably beyond then, stating: “Hot, moist air spreading north and northeast across the western side of the UK is expected to produce thunderstorms later on Tuesday, these then transfer erratically northeastwards during Wednesday.

“Rainfall will be very variable, and the extent of thunderstorms is uncertain, but some places could see around 30 mm in an hour and more than 50 mm in a few hours.”

Dr Huw Stacey, director of clinical services at Vets4Pets, has also warned animal owners to take care during the unusually warm weather.

“High temperatures can be very dangerous for many pets, as hot weather can make roads and pavements too hot to walk on, particularly for pets’ sensitive paws and pads. So walking dogs at cooler times of the day can help avoid burnt feet,” warned Dr Stacey.

“Owners must also remember to never leave their pet in a car, conservatory or caravan on a warm day. Even if it feels mild outside, the temperature inside can reach up to 40 degrees in just 30 minutes,” the campaigning vet stated.