Temperature soars to 30C in Northern Ireland as heatwave is set to continue
The temperature soared to a searing 30C in the west of Northern Ireland yesterday – the highest the mercury has hit in seven years.
And the good news is that the heatwave is set to continue for days to come – although maybe not staying at those blistering levels.
Who needs sun holidays when temperatures in Northern Ireland managed to beat Ibiza (29C), Cancun (29C), New York (27C), Tenerife (24C), Lanzarote (24C), Crete (27C) and Sicily (26C)?
Yesterday afternoon temperatures rocketed to 30C in Castlederg at 3pm, the highest temperature since June 17, 18 and 19, 2006.
On that occasion, it was also Castlederg that recorded Northern Ireland's top temperatures.
"It's a sheltered spot out in the far west and, with a very light easterly flow like we had today, it has the longest land track so the air gets warmed up before it gets there," Met Office spokesman John Wylie explained.
In contrast, east coast tourist hotspots like Helen's Bay and Murlough Bay only saw temperatures rising to 19 or 20C.
Forecasters are predicting some mists around east coast areas.
Last night Mr Wylie predicted another scorcher today.
"We're looking at 26C-28C across inland parts.
"The rest of the week is looking dry and settled – temperatures will be a little variable at times but they will still be warm to very warm," he said.
Forecaster Meteogroup said today will remain sunny but with light winds making conditions more pleasant.
Meteogroup forecaster Laura Caldwell said temperatures will dip a little on Wednesday, although it will still stay in the 20s, and Thursday could see the mercury rise again as high as 27C.
"On Friday there will be sunny spells and temperatures as high as 26C, although all through this week it will be quite misty around the coast," she said.
"We're not expecting anything too wet and wild into next week – it will probably be quite pleasant settled weather.
"There is an area of high pressure sitting over the British Isles and that is likely to hang around for a while."
The reason we are finally enjoying a July heatwave after years of torrential, cold summers is the the weather pattern caused by the polar vortex and the jet stream, according to the Weather Channel.
Online forecasters Northern Ireland Weather issued a level 2 advisory, warning that the temperature was expected to be high for more than two days.
It warned people out in the sunshine to use sunscreen as the predicted 27-28C highs would mean a very high UV index.
"High temperatures can be dangerous, especially for the elderly, the very young and people with chronic conditions," they said.