Plummeting temperatures, wintry showers to overspread much of Europe

Maura Kelly
·4 min read

Record-high temperatures for March were broken across parts of Europe on the final day of the month, but a storm eyeing the region will bring more winterlike conditions and below-normal temperatures to these same areas.

On Easter Sunday, a drastic change in the weather pattern began across northwestern Europe. A storm near Scandinavia will drag a cold front across the United Kingdom and Ireland through Sunday night.

Anyone headed to church in celebration of Easter across Scotland, Northern Ireland and far northern England had to prepare for showers as well as cooler weather.

The cold front continued advancing across France and Germany on Monday, ushering in areas of showers as well as drastically cooler conditions compared to the end of March.

On Monday, temperatures were in the 40s F (4-9 C) across much of the United Kingdom, northeastern France, northern Germany and northwest Poland. In the Scottish Highlands, temperatures will struggle to climb out of the 30s F (0-4 C) to start the week.

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Similar temperatures are expected to occur in southern France and Germany into the middle of the week.

As temperatures drop and the front advances, rain can mix with and even change over to snow or sleet at times across much of Europe.

By Tuesday, the wintry mix is forecast to spread into the Balkan Peninsula as showers taper off in the United Kingdom and into France.

Outside of a slushy coating in some colder spots, little to no accumulation of snow is expected across most of the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Poland, especially after the mild conditions last week.

However, in the higher elevations across Europe, including the Scottish Highlands, the Alps and Carpathian Mountains, precipitation is forecast to fall as mainly snow and can lead to accumulations.

"One to three inches (3-8 cm) of snow will accumulate across the Alps, the Dinaric Alps, the Apennines, the Carpathian Mountains and into central Ukraine," said AccuWeather Meteorologist Tony Zartman.

"Six to twelve inches (15-30 cm) of snow will accumulate the higher elevations of the Alps, the Dinaric Alps and the Carpathian Mountains," said Zartman, adding that these are the most likely locations for the AccuWeather Local StormMax™ of 30 inches (75 cm) to occur.

This amount of snow can lead to slippery roads and sidewalks at lower elevations and dangerous travel conditions at higher mountain passes.

In addition to blustery, wintry showers, the storm near Scandinavia can bring wind gusts of 50-60 mph (80-100 km/h) to Scotland, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands with an AccuWeather Local StormMax™ of 70 mph (115 km/h). Strong wind gusts can cause rough seas, localized damage and power outages.

Chilly weather can persist into the second half of the week as the next storm system can bring a reinforcing blast of cold as well as another round of showers.

This winter reminder will come following a tase of summer and record-breaking temperatures across much Europe.

People enjoy the sunny weather along the Canal Saint-Martin despite the coronavirus pandemic in Paris, France, on March 31, 2021. Critical care doctors in Paris say surging coronavirus infections could soon overwhelm their ability to care for the sick in the French capital's hospitals, possibly forcing them to choose which patients they have the resources to save. President Macron is expected to give a TV speech on Wednesday detailing possible new restrictions to fight COVID-19. Photo by Aurore Marechal/ABACAPRESS.COM

One of the cities that set a new record was Paris. The afternoon temperature reached 78 F (25.6 C) in the French capital on Wednesday. This set a new record-high temperature for the month of March in the City of Lights.

Highs in the 70s F (21-26 C) were common from Spain and France to Germany and western Poland. Even parts of central England topped that same threshold.

Normal high temperatures during the end of March range from the middle 50s F (around 13 C) in France and Germany to around 60 F (16 C) in Spain.

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