Extreme weather is a new phenomenon isn’t it?
In January of 1953, unusual weather conditions caused Britain’s worst national peacetime disaster of the 20th century. A storm surge flooded the eastern coast of England, killing more than 300 people and leaving thousands homeless. Fifty years later, ‘Timewatch’ re-examines a calamity which is largely forgotten today.
The 1953 storm, according to Ewen McCallum from the Met Office, is:
‘A very natural event…a typical winter storm…the Pole in the Northern latitude is very cold and there’s still some very warm tropical air further south and when the two air streams come together we get a tremendous energy bang…it’s nature’s way of trying to equalise out the heat ….a very natural event, a very powerful event.’
The (1st) Grote Mandrenke was a massive southwesterly Atlantic gale (see also European windstorm) which swept across England, the Netherlands, northern Germany, and Schleswig around 16 January 1362, causing at minimum 25,000 deaths.