Status Red weather warning WILL be issued in coming days and worst is yet to come - Met Éireann forecaster
- Red warning WILL be issued in coming days - Met Éireann forecaster
- 'I know people are talking about the weather at the moment, but the bad weather is still to come' - Joanna Donnelly
- 'Beast from the east': Country can expect blizzard-like conditions
- Warning: Blizzard conditions 'are not for playing in'
- Storm Emma to bring 'real feel temperatures' of minus 10
- National Emergency Co-ordination Group to decide whether schools will be closed
There will be a red weather warning issued in the coming days, the weather is "deteriorating" and there are blizzard-like conditions to come, says a Met Éireann forecaster.
Well-known forecaster Joanna Donnelly said there will be a Status Red warning issued before the end of the week, but the forecasting team "have to wait until we have all of the best evidence in front of us."
Ms Donnelly addressed the people who "are out there saying it's beautiful day".
"The weather is deteriorating so it is going to get bad," Ms Donnelly said.
And she also advised people that blizzard conditions "are not for playing in".
Speaking on RTE Radio One's Ray D'arcy Show, Ms Donnelly said snow showers currently on the east coast are due to become more persistent and more widespread.
'Beast from the East': Watch LIVE and track the predicted path of Storm Emma across Ireland
Storm Emma: Some communities may be cut off 'for days' as emergency services battle major snow falls
Storm Emma: Some communities may be cut off 'for days' as emergency services battle major snow falls For weather updates click here: http://indo.ie/eSH630iIwDxPosted by Independent.ie on Friday, March 2, 2018
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The forecaster spoke as the country prepares for Storm Emma and the 'Beast from the East, which is expected to bring "real feel temperatures" of minus 10 and blizzard-like conditions to the country.
"I know people are talking about the weather at the moment, but if you all remember we have been forecasting that it is a deterioration and the bad weather is still to come," Ms Donnelly said.
"We were never forecasting that today was going to be a snowy day. The showers are coming. They are on the east coast at the moment. "They are intermittent. They are becoming more persistent and widespread. And it's going to get worse.
"The people that are out there saying it; "It's a beautiful day", the weather is deteriorating so it is going to get bad.
"And they're going to become more persistent, more widespread.
"People need to take note, the warnings in operation today are for the east coast. They will be updated. There will be more warnings issued, there will be a red warning issued but we have to wait until we have all of the best evidence in front of us."
2/2 ...Snow showers will develop more readily across the east of Leinster again later today. Highest temperatures will range only 3 to 6°C in fresh northeast winds, with an added wind chill factor.— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) February 27, 2018
She added; "But I would like to say, it's not 1982. In 1982, we didn't even have the DART.
"We didn't have the infrastructure we have now. The country shouldn't grind to a halt like it did in 1982.
"We're also very well prepared. This isn't side-swiping us. And it won't last forever. There is no real need to clear out the shelves in the supermarket, unless you want to."
Ms Donnelly said temperatures are currently on a "steady decline" and the country can expect temperatures to drop to minus five and minus six overnight.
"Tomorrow, temperatures around freezing," she continued.
"With the winds picking up, that's what we call a 'real feel'. We're not used to a wind chill in this country or area of the world.
"It will have a real feel of about minus 10, so that's cold, you won't be out in your shirt tomorrow.
"Thursday night will have blizzard and we're not used to blizzard conditions. The recent memory of 2010, that wasn't blizzard conditions.
"That was a prolonged spell of cold, it wasn't blizzard conditions."
Ms Donnelly warned people that blizzard-conditions are "not for playing in", but said she hopes people will get to enjoy the snow once the worst has passed.
"I know tobaggans are being sold out and people are thinking they're going to have great fun sliding in the snow, but nobody wants to go out in a blizzard," she said.
"Blizzard conditions are not playing. I hope people get to enjoy the snowy conditions after that, but don't bring anybody out in blizzard conditions."
The well-known forecaster also said she does not expect the country to go into shutdown.
"It's not 1982 anymore, our infrastructure has massively improved since then," she said.
"I hope the country won't grind to a halt. I hope we're well prepared for this."
Meanwhile, the National Emergency Co-ordination Group (NECG) are set to decide whether schools will be closed as 'Storm Emma' hits Ireland.
Chairman of the NECG Sean Hogan said all the signs from weather experts is that Storm Emma will hit on Thursday.
He said householders should be braced for an “exceptional event” but every effort will be made “to keep the country moving”.
The Department of Education have said today that they will continue to monitor the situation ahead of what Met Eireann describe as 'significant snowfall'.
Mr Hogan said that some direction may be given to employers in the coming days as to whether they should close their businesses – but this is not yet clear.
“It’s not a simple matter,” he said, adding that essential services would have to stay in operation.
Defence Forces are on standby to help with 4x4 vehicles and the Air Corp will be called in for flyovers of certain areas if there are extensive power outages or road damage.
“We are dealing with probabilities here rather than definites,” Mr Hogan said.
Asked whether householders should leave taps running in order to stop pipes from freezing, Mr Hogan said this was not advised.
“Do not run the taps,” he said, adding that this could run down supplies in the reservoirs.
Meanwhile, Archbishop of Armagh Eamon Martin has called on parishioners to be vigilant for the vulnerable during extreme weather.
The archbishop issued the following statement ahead of 'Storm Emma' and the predicted blizzards for the week.
"The weather forecast for the coming days is expected to be exceptionally cold and to include a significant snowfall," he said.
"This bad weather will affect and frighten many people across our country.
"Some will be afraid because they are alone, elderly, suffer from underlying medical conditions while others will be cold and hungry.
"They may too proud to admit their vulnerability."
He continued; "At this challenging time I am asking all able people of goodwill to be alert to the needs of vulnerable neighbour, old and young, to check if they have enough food, fuel supplies and adequate clothing, to assist in clearing pathways to homes and to offer transport for essential journeys."
He also asked people to support their local farmers as it is lambing season and the death rate for all livestock increases sharply in extreme weather.