Thursday 23 November 2017

Orange weather alert in effect as thunderstorms to strike entire country

Flood warnings
Flood warnings

Brian Byrne and Mark O'Regan

MET Eireann has issued an Orange Weather alert for the entire country as thunderstorms look set to strike today.

Motorists are also being urged to drive with extreme care today as high winds and heavy downpours hit several parts of the country.

An Orange Alert is the second most severe alert which can be issued.

A spokesperson for Met Eireann told this morning that the warning will remain in place until tonight at least.

“The warning is in place for the whole country. Normally thunderstorms would be isolated however these ones will be widespread throughout the country.

“There will be a lot of showers later this morning before more thundery weather moves in the late morning and early afternoon.”

Met Eireann has also warned that flash flooding should be expected in some areas.

“We had 6 – 7mm of rain in some areas yesterday in some downpours, and we could see an inch today.

“The ground is already saturated in some areas which increases the risk of flash flooding. There’s definitely a risk of torrential downpours.”

But while heavy and thundery downpours will lash much of the country, temperatures are expected to jump to 20C this weekend.

While some sunny spells are expected today, showers will soon become widespread and outbreaks of flash flooding and hail are expected. But the highly changeable conditions are set to continue as hazy sunshine will make another welcome return later this week.

Met Eireann is predicting the best conditions this weekend in both the capital and across the eastern part of the country, with temperatures to reach as high as 20C.

While the west is still battling heavy rains today, it too is set to enjoy a much drier, brighter weekend.

However, forecasters warned that while conditions from Thursday onwards will be an improvement on today and tomorrow, the best places to enjoy the sun will be in back gardens and parks, as coastal areas will be much cooler, only reaching a maximum of 13C.

The favourable weather conditions could even carry on into next week with a positive outlook for further sunshine predicted.

A spokesperson from Met Eireann said: "From tomorrow onwards there will be high pressure building over the country, which will cause a return to more settled and warmer conditions.

"The outlook for the weekend, and certainly for the east of the country, looks quite pleasant."

Irish Independent

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