Gale warning as year draws to stormy end
THIS year's stormy Christmas season looks set to continue with strong winds to batter the country again.
The mild temperatures ruined any chance of a white Christmas this year but the wild weather that caused havoc at the weekend may return as early as tonight.
Met Eireann issued a weather warning yesterday and forecast wind speeds of as much as 100kmph in some exposed areas.
There were power cuts and fallen trees nationwide on Sunday morning following gale-force winds that lashed the country overnight on Saturday.
As many as 1,700 households were left without power with the west coast – as well as Dublin, Kilkenny and Waterford – among the worst hit areas which were rocked by gusts of more than 100kmph.
According to Met Eireann the very blustery conditions will return this evening and will continue into tomorrow with sustained strong average winds speeds across the country.
Forecaster Joan Blackburn told the Irish Independent: "It's a very disturbed picture over the next few days. Atlantic weather is dominating and there'll be wet and windy spells.
"In the evening, winds get up again and it looks like getting very windy everywhere and wet weather will spread up across the country.
"I'd expect gales and maybe even stronger winds, it depends on how it all pans out."
She said: "There'll be strong winds everywhere" but it may not be "as gusty or squally" as on Saturday night.
Tomorrow will see southerly gales throughout the day.
"With those strong winds you'll also have high temperatures – about 11 or 12 degrees because they're coming from a southerly direction," she added.
Ms Blackburn said that most of the rain would fall in the west and the north but that the rest of the country would also see showers.
"Saturday will be another bright, breezy, blustery day with sunny spells and showers really and probably similar conditions on Sunday as well," she said.
Temperatures are set to drop over the weekend, with frost expected in most parts of the country.