Met Office Forecasts of the European Storms of Autumn 2000

Sean Milton

Manager Model Diagnostics and Validation
NWP Division
U.K. Met Office

Abstract: September, October and November 2000 were exceptional months in terms of weather over the U.K. and Europe. This Autumn was the wettest in England and Wales since records began in 1766, and many areas experienced severe and repeated flooding and gale damage as Western Europe was battered by a succession of deep Atlantic cyclones. In the first part of this talk we give an overview of the synoptic/climatic situation and review the performance of the Met Office NWP models in predicting the extreme events during this period. This will include the performance of the global model at predicting the large scale synoptic development out to 6 days ahead and comparisons with global models from other NWP centres. The performance of the UK-area model will also be discussed, in particular the quantitative precipitation forecasts (QPF's) out to 36 hours ahead. We focus on three noteable events from the Autumn period (i) the Kent Sussex floods of 11-12 October, (ii) the 30th October Storm, and (iii) the 5-6 November storm. In the second part of the talk a review of the Met Office plans to develop NWP over the next 5 years will be presented.