Month of weather extremes ends with fifth storm

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weather extremes with Storm Justine bringing January to a close
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MADRID: Temperature differences recorded of more than 50 degrees in a fortnight as January records a month of weather extremes

The Spanish meteorological institute AEMET announces high record temperatures, fog and the arrival of a new violent storm. Justine, the fifth January storm, will enter Spain on Friday via the northwest and will be accompanied by very strong winds and heavy rainfall.

Difference of fifty degrees in a fortnight

AEMET spokesperson Beatriz Hervella points to the enormous temperature differences this month in Spain, with cold and heat records. After the cold wave with extremely low temperatures, this week Valencia recorded a high of 26ºC. That was a difference of more than 50 degrees Celsius in a fortnight.

Month of records and weather extremes

January was a month of weather extremes – not only extremely cold, it had some high points too. Tuesday produced several records for minimum temperatures in January with 10.8 ºC in Salamanca,  8.7ºC in Avila and 11.3ºC in Ciudad Real. Valladolid recorded a minimum temperature of 10.3 ºC, breaking the previous record set in 1995. In Valencia, Wednesday’s recorded 26º equalled the historical high of 5 January 2012.

Warmer than normal

AEMET expects this trend to continue, as maximum temperatures continue to rise on the Mediterranean coast. This is especially true in Murcia and Valencia, and on the Canary Islands. In large parts of the country, maximum temperatures will exceed 25 ºC. These are values 5 to 10 degrees higher than normal at this time of year.

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Storm Justine on its way

The instability is not over yet; a new storm is approaching. It is the tenth violent storm of the season and the fifth in January. Justine, which will reach Spain from the northwest, will develop and increase in strength quickly and will mainly hit the Bay of Biscay. On Friday, from noon into Saturday the effects will be the strongest. On Saturday afternoon, the very powerful westerly wind – which could reach gale force 9 – will cause waves of more than 8 metres high, especially if the storm coincides with high tide.

Weather warning

In Asturias and Galicia, a weather warning has been issued (code yellow). Heavy rain and very strong wind gusts of 70 to 90 kilometres per hour will hit almost all of Galicia, the southwest of Asturias and the Picos de Europa.

Strong winds are also predicted on the coast of La Coruña. On Saturday, weather warnings will also be issued in various places in Cantabria, especially on the coast (code orange) where the wind can reach 100 kilometres per hour on cliffs.

The storm is likely to reach the east coast of Andalusia, Melilla and the Balearic Islands, where westerly winds of force 7 and waves of 3 to 4 metres are expected. On Sunday, the wind will decrease from the west.

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