A Driving Instructor's Blog

Weather

The BBC website is full of stories today about how poor Londoners and Home Counties residents had some heavy thunderstorms yesterday. Apparently, “one month’s worth of rain fell on London is less than 24 hours.” A prominent table shows how Reading had 20mm of rain, Hampton 41mm, and Farnborough 46mm.

Mmmm. Just in case they missed it, Nottingham had a recorded total of 55mm of rain over three days between 14-16 June (20mm was recorded on 15 June). There is only one Met Office station up here, at Watnall, and the heaviest localised rainfall was definitely not there, and actual rainfall at such locations was certainly much higher. Many homes and businesses were flooded. But that never got into the news headlines. And all this applied to areas of Leicestershire, Derbyshire, and South Yorkshire.

There are a couple of dozen Met Office stations in and around London – or what is considered to be “London” when the media is reporting things. The rainfall figures from yesterday are much less likely to have missed any extreme localised events.

As the title says, all that matters is London. No one else exists on the front pages.

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They’ve been naming hurricanes (all right, cyclones) for years. They all used to have female names, but someone somewhere decided that this was sexist and now they alternate between male and female. Apparently, they have six lists for the North Atlantic, each list comprising names beginning with the letters A-W, but excluding Q and U. Usually, they only have to use about half of the names each year.Heavy rain

Britain has decided to get in on the act and has begun naming our storms, but in true British style they opened it up to the public – no doubt with prizes being awarded to the best papier mâché models, covered in glitter and dried spaghetti. As a result, possible names include: Clodagh, Frank, Gertrude, Desmond, Henry, Imogen, Jake, Katie, Eva, Lawrence, Mary, Nigel, Orla, Phil, Rhonda, Steve, Tegan, Vernon and Wendy. We’ve already had Barney, Eva, and Abigail, while Frank recently strutted his stuff. You just KNOW that the names relate to relatives and children of typical Daily Mail readers.

Laughably, virtually every storm cloud that comes across bringing rain or wind is getting named at the moment. At this rate we’re going to need another twenty names before the end of the winter.

(Obviously, this does not detract from the problems those whose homes were flooded are having to cope with).

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