The Met Office is monitoring two weather events, namely snow and ice, which are “battling for influence over the UK” and may bring more low temperatures to Scotland in the coming weeks.
Meteorologists have noted that, combined with very cold weather, a sudden stratospheric warming is underway.
The sudden stratospheric warming in 2018 culminated in the heavy snow nicknamed the “Beast from the East” but the Met Office said the phenomenon is likely to bring more cold weather without heavy snow, although it is difficult to forecast.
In the Pacific Ocean, the agency is also monitoring La Nina, which could bring wet and stormy weather as the chances of westerly winds in the United Kingdom increase.
“The two events are happening at the same time, so in some ways they are competing against each other,” Met Office spokeswoman Nicola Maxey said.
At Queen’s Park, where the pond was frozen over, the Glaswegians enjoyed the ice rink. Photograph: Colin Mearns
“In a way they are fighting for influence over the UK, we are a very small dot in the middle of the ocean.”
She added that it takes at least 10 days for warming in the stratosphere to go down into our atmosphere.
“Right now, we feel like we’re going to see some colder weather toward the end of January and into February, but probably the kind of weather we’re seeing right now, as opposed to what’s commonly perceived as Beast from the East.” Ms. Maxey went on to say.
“There’s still a lot of work to be done, we’re keeping an eye on the situation, the experts are working on how that might affect our weather.”
Meteorologists forecast that the cold snap would persist in most of the UK, with next week’s temperatures expected to stay slightly below normal.
In the coming days, temperatures will remain in single digits across Scotland, with possible rain, sleet and snow in places.
With Scots in the Highlands & Eilean Siar, Grampian, Central, Tayside & Fife, Strathclyde, Dumfries, Galloway, and Lothian & Borders all warned to prepare for freezing temperatures, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Perth are included in the Met Office weather alerts.
A Met Office statement warns that “some injuries” may occur from “slips and falls on icy surfaces, such as icy patches on untreated roads, pavements and cycle paths.”