PARTS of Scotland have enjoyed their mildest December night for at least a decade – and temperatures could rise further.
Records were broken at 41 weather stations across the UK on Wednesday night, including in Scotland. The Met Office said temperatures reached 16C at Achnagart, south-east of Kyle of Lochalsh, 14.5C at Kinloss in Moray and 12C in Aberdeen.
After recent flooding these areas are more responsive to relatively small amounts of rainfallMet Office
The agency said it had been the fourth mildest start to December across the UK since 1960, with temperatures 7C above the seasonal average.
The unseasonably mild conditions also threaten to topple the UK December record, of 18.3C at Achnashellach, west of Inverness, in 1948.
A Met Office spokesman said: “It is definitely staying like this towards the weekend and will be mild through Friday and on Saturday especially, with temperatures up to 15C or 16C.”
However, the agency has also issued a heavy rain warning for southern and western Scotland for today and tomorrow, which could cause flooding. The yellow – “be aware” – alert was issued as up to 80mm of rain is expected between 3pm today and 1pm tomorrow.
The rainfall – with 20-30mm more widely – comes after heavy rain in November saturated the ground in large parts of the country.
The warning area covers the Borders, Dumfries and Galloway and the west coast as far north as Mallaig. The Met Office warned of “some localised flooding in recently-affected areas”.
Its spokesman said: “These rainfall amounts would not usually be of concern, but following recent flooding these areas are more responsive to relatively small amounts of rain.”
However, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency said it did not expect dust from the Sahara desert, which has reddened sunrises in England, to affect Scotland.
A spokeswoman said: “It looks as though if it did come up, it would be up the west coast, and there is rain forecast into the weekend, so even if things changed on Saturday it would be washed out.”