Cyclonic storm systems will hurtle towards Britain propelled by the jet stream as it strengthens from a collision between tropical and Arctic air. The remains of Hurricane Nicole, which struck the US last week, will head towards Canada, bumping into a swathe of bitter polar air that has plunged the country into an early winter mega-freeze.
Met Office meteorologist Alex Deakin said: “We need to look right across the other side of the Atlantic.
“Nicole will transition into a deep area of low pressure and bring a lot of wet and windy weather to the eastern coast of the United States and up towards Canada.
“At the same time, we have an active winter storm drawing in some very cold air.
“It’s the contrast between the warm tropical air and the cold air trying to pile south from the Arctic that will power the jet stream.
“It will invigorate the jet stream and power it down across the Atlantic through the weekend and that changes things for us as we go into next week.”
The jet will sweep across the Atlantic and over the UK steering turbulent low-pressure systems towards Britain.
Their impact will depend on a separate region of high pressure over Europe, the driver of the recent mild weather.
This colossal ‘anticyclone’ may block the worst of the Atlantic lows from colliding with the UK.
Mr Deakin said: “The jet stream will pick up areas of low pressure, intensifying them and spreading them towards the UK.
“How far they get across the Atlantic is the big question mark for next week because they are still bumping up against that area of high pressure which is still sitting across the Continent acting like a block.
“This is the scrap that we need to keep an eye on next week.”
As stormy systems roll in through the coming days, Britain’s mild and settled weather will turn ever more ‘disturbed’.
Temperatures will dip as wind and rain turns down the heat from the freakish 17C weekend highs.
The mercury will dip into single figures by the end of the week with Scotland and northern England touching freezing.
Jim Dale, meteorologist for British Weather Services, said: “The weather is going to turn much more disturbed next week, after the very mild and settled weather at the weekend.
“There will be a lot of showery rain around through the week, and it is going to turn colder, which after the weekend will be a step in the direction of normality for the time of year.
“The weather will start to turn more unsettled from Monday and will continue on this theme through the week.”
A battle between tropical and polar airstreams will drive the stormy weather through the week, he warned.
“The feed of both air streams will set things off,” he said.
“These lows could easily deepen very quickly, and then we have the potential for something very nasty.
“It is the mix of tropical air and cold air that will drive the jet stream and will drive the unsettled weather next week.”