Tuesday 26 March 2019

Ireland basks in warm spring climate as repeat of Storm Emma-style weather unlikely

Alicia Okley (7), from Clontarf, taking photos of the crocus in bloom at the Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Alicia Okley (7), from Clontarf, taking photos of the crocus in bloom at the Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Wayne O'Connor

Wayne O'Connor

Ireland can look forward to a true spring, with warm weather and little likelihood of a repeat of last year's March snowstorm.

Most parts of western Europe will get an early switch to spring warmth and the southern half of Ireland and Britain will get the best of it as a warm airflow spills over from France.

AccuWeather meteorologist Tyler Roys said: "High pressure will set up over western Europe and the Bay of Biscay for much of the season, providing stretches of dry weather to much of France and the Iberian Peninsula."

Forecasters say this pattern will result in higher-than-normal temperatures across Ireland but in the north much of the warmth will be spoiled by frequent wet weather as storms from the Atlantic cross near or just north of Scotland.

AccuWeather's senior meteorologist Alan Reppert said: "Above-normal rainfall is expected across much of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Northern England for the season as a whole.

"The most likely time for a lengthy period of dry weather in these areas will be during May," he added.

Atlantic storms will also bring the threat of damaging winds, with the greatest risk across Northern Ireland, Scotland and Northern England during the months of March and April.

Last year Storm Emma brought the country to a virtual standstill, with snow accumulations of up 30cms over much of the country.

Parts of the Wicklow Mountains recorded 60cms of snow at the height of Storm Emma, the biggest accumulation since the winter of 1982.

It led Met Eireann to issue a status red nationwide warning and the Government's National Emergency Coordination Group advised people to stay indoors.

Schools and workplaces shut for days while farmers faced huge difficulties and workers were told not to turn up for work.

But there is little chance of a repeat in 2019, AccuWeather forecasters have concluded.

Unseasonably warm weather in the first two weeks of January led to many plants and flowers blooming early .

Met Eireann said that tomorrow will be cooler than recent days, with a mix of sunny spells and showers.

The showers, some of them thundery and with the risk of hail, will be widespread in Connacht and Ulster but they will tend to be more scattered elsewhere.

It will be mostly wet and breezy for the rest of the week but there will be the odd dry period.

Met Eireann forecasters said: "A milder than average Atlantic type regime is likely to prevail through the rest of the week and into next weekend.

"Wet and breezy conditions will alternate with drier and brighter interludes."

Sunday Independent

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