Forecasters have put a dampener on reports that Britain is set to see the "hottest summer ever" in 2016, adding that this cannot be determined yet. Amid a number of media reports citing highs of 33C in the UK this summer, the Met Office has said that the "science does not exist" to be able to predict exact temperatures so far in advance.
While the Met Office's long-range weather outlook suggests that temperatures are likely to be "above average" until the middle of June, there has been no mention of the weather beyond this point in the year. Furthermore, Met Office forecasters issued a reminder that their long range outlook is not to be seen as a valid prediction, but as a guideline for businesses who rely on weather patterns.
Nicola Maxey, Senior Press Officer for the Met Office, told IBTimes UK: "You would need consistent mean temperatures to determine the 'hottest summer ever'. You wouldn't be able to do this based on one temperature."
She went on to say that she had "no idea" where the prediction of 33C came from and that there had been no mention of this anywhere on the Met Office website. However, Maxey noted that this would not be unusual as the UK saw highs of 37C in summer 2015.
A statement about the Met Office's long-range weather prediction noted: "When looking at forecasts beyond five days into the future, the chaotic nature of the atmosphere starts to come into play – small events currently over the Atlantic can have potentially significant impacts on our weather in the UK in several days' time."
Meanwhile, the late summer months are expected to be a washout as the Met Office has predicted an above-average Atlantic hurricane season, with 14 tropical storms expected to form in the Atlantic Ocean between June and November. While forecasters were focused on the effect of the El Nino in the Eastern Pacific, they will begin focusing on La Nina conditions during peak hurricane season.
Joanne Camp, Climate Scientist at the Met Office, said: "El Nino conditions in the Pacific can hinder the development of tropical storms in the Atlantic, whereas La Nina conditions can enhance tropical storm activity, so how these conditions develop will be important for the storm season ahead."