Severe weather warning as temperature to plummet as low as -6C this week
Published 21/01/2013 | 05:00
DRIVERS have been urged to take particular care on the roads this week, as the icy chill delivers snow to many areas.
And air travellers destined for the UK and locations across northern Europe have been warned to prepare for further disruption to flights amid heavy snowfalls.
Snow and ice is causing treacherous driving conditions in parts of Dublin, Meath, Cavan and Monaghan today with heavier snowfalls reported in Cork and Kerry.
In Dublin, snow around Ballymun and Finglas early today caused serious problems for drivers.
Slushy and slippery conditions were reported on the M50 around Ballinteer while road conditions around Glencullen, Ticknock, Stepaside and Kilternan were dangerous after sleet and snow showers.
There was also heavy snowfall in the Dundrum and Stepaside areas with parts of the M50 affected.
Night-time temperatures could plunge as low as -6C overnight tomorrow and on Wednesday night, while daytime temperatures will vary around 1C to 4C over the coming week.
Met Eireann issued a weather warning, with snow showers expected to coat eastern counties, parts of Ulster and inland areas in Munster with between 3cm and 6cm of snow overnight.
Meteorologist Jean Byrne advised that Ireland will escape the level of widespread snow that has caused havoc across the UK.
"It will be very cold most of this week up to and including Thursday night," Ms Byrne said. "Over the next seven days, the temperatures overall are between 1C and almost 4C below normal."
Further scattered showers of rain, sleet and snow were expected to hit Ulster and the east coast today.
Motorists were urged to take particular care with the plummeting temperatures delivering freezing fog in places, snow and the chance of icy roads overnight.
The Road Safety Authority urged motorists to allow extra time for journeys, reduce speed and keep a distance from the vehicle travelling in front.
Drivers were urged to watch out for 'black ice', while pedestrians and cyclists were urged to wear reflective gear.
Amid disruption to flights, all passengers were told to check with their airline's website for the latest information before travelling to the airport.
People considering walking in the mountains were urged to "exercise extreme caution", as three experienced climbers were rescued from the Comeragh Mountains.