Tuesday 20 February 2018

Wrap up warm! 'Scandinavian shiver' to bring sleet, snow and biting winds

Freeze expected before 'warmer' Valentine's Day

Snow is falling in Castlebar and frost is predicted overnight (Stock)
Snow is falling in Castlebar and frost is predicted overnight (Stock)
Mark O'Regan

Mark O'Regan

A 'Scandinavian Shiver' will bring sleet, snow and biting winds today as winter's icy grip takes hold.

Freezing temperatures experienced over the past week will continue, with severe frost and icy patches expected on higher ground.

The morning will start off cloudy with scattered showers, mainly in the east and south, but becoming more widespread this evening.

Met Eireann forecaster Evelyn Cusack said it was going to be a "raw day" throughout the country.

"It will be cold and windy, and the air mass from Scandinavia will produce some snow flurries. Temperatures will be between 3C and 6C - but it will feel more like zero due to the wind-chill effect.

"The winds will be strong so it will feel very, very cold, everywhere. No location is going to be spared. Countrywide it's going to be a cold, raw day, with rain, sleet and snow," she added.

Meanwhile, the mercury is set to plummet overnight, and hit zero in most parts of the country.

It will be mainly cloudy with patchy rain or drizzle, and sleet or hill snow is a possibility on higher ground. Ms Cusack warned temperatures could hit lows of 0C to 2C, with moderate to fresh and gusty easterly winds.

A combination of rain and snow in some areas could lead to black ice on the roads, meaning that motorists will have to take extra care when travelling.

Drivers and cyclists are being warned to be especially careful on untreated surfaces. Pedestrians are also warned pavements could be icy.

The sharp chill is due to the 'Scandinavian Shiver' - a 1,500-mile wide air mass which originated in Sweden and is now sweeping across large swathes of Ireland.

But the weather is set to get somewhat warmer for Valentine's Day on Tuesday.

"There will be a shift to milder, southerly winds during the week," Ms Cusack added.

Tomorrow will be predominantly dry, although some areas along the south coast may be hit by heavy showers early in the morning.

Temperatures will pick up in the afternoon, hitting a high of 11C.

It will be dry at first on Tuesday, but outbreaks of rain in Munster and south Leinster will gradually spread northwards. It will be cloudy at night, with a band of rain spreading north-eastwards. Temperatures will range between 4C and 7C.

Sunday Independent

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