Hurricane Ophelia: First major storm of the autumn set to smash into the UK

Tropical Storm Ophelia strengthened to a hurricane overnight and is now heading towards the UK, forecasters warn.

Thursday, 12th October 2017, 2:40 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 9:52 am
Computer models show Hurricane Ophelia heading towards the UK. NOAA

The huge weather system is currently situated in the mid-Atlantic and is packing sustained winds of 85mph.

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Ophelia is tracking slowly north-eastwards towards the British Isles and is expected to maintain hurricane strength before weakening slightly to a storm as it passes over the cooler waters which surround the UK.

The latest computer models predict that Northern Ireland and Scotland will bear the full brunt of the storm on Monday but strong winds and heavy rain will also lash northern England.

The wild and stormy start to next week will follow a weekend of balmy weekend with temperatures soaring to 20C or more across much of the country.