Scottish Heat Record Declared Invalid Thanks To A Car Parked Near Thermometer

Down here in the cursed Antipodes, we have been observing the stories of the British heatwave with deep skepticism. We shake our heads in disgust as our sun-starved Commonwealth cousins struggle through temperatures over 30ºC. Obviously it’s different when it’s so hot on the British Isles because it’s humid as hell and they have absolutely no infrastructure to deal with it, but still. Let us have this.

Throughout this heatwave, it was reported that Scotland reported its hottest ever day, with the mercury topping out at a positively scorching 33.2°C. A respectable effort! Unfortunately, as the Met Office reports in their official blog, that reading has been discarded as invalid, meaning the record hottest day is still the 9th August 2003, which hit 32.9 °C at Greycrook.

Why was the record not valid? Well, it turns out that the thermometer owned by the official weather service might have registered an incorrect temperature reading thanks to a car idling nearby:

Unfortunately in this particular instance we have evidence that a stationary vehicle with its engine running was parked too close to the observing enclosure and the Stevenson screen housing the thermometers during the afternoon of 28th June. Although the measurement appears plausible given the weather conditions that day we cannot rule-out the potential for contamination of the measurement by this non-weather-related factor.

There you go. Kenneth’s parked his fookin Vauxhall too close to the thermometer.

Obviously from the blog post it’s clear that the reading might have actually been valid, but there’s unfortunately no way of knowing just how much the car’s hot engine might have influenced the result. So they’re back to a positively frosty 32.9ºC.