herald

Saturday 30 August 2014

Snow, ice and winds on the way this week

AND just when we thought we had got away with it.

A cold snap is expected to grip the country later today -- with severe frost and snow showers heading our way due to Siberian winds.

Met Eireann expects this week to be marked by the worst weather of the winter so far with temperatures falling as low as -5C by Thursday in places.

The drastic change in our weather comes after Ireland experienced one of its mildest winters on record.

But all that could change as weather forecasters have warned that we should brace ourselves for freezing weather as chilly winds from Russia will sweep across the country from Thursday.

British forecasters have already issued a warning for sleet and snow in south Wales as they prepare for the region to be hit by a Siberian cold blast before Ireland.

Met Eireann forecaster Pat Clarke said that temperatures would drop to low single digits during the day and drop to -5C later this week.

"It is going to get much colder, yet a lot of Europe will be much, much colder than here as we are out in the ocean so we won't fare as bad as other parts," Mr Clarke said.

While some snow is expected to fall across Ireland -- particularly in the north and east of the country -- he said that the mild weather front over the Atlantic Ocean should protect Ireland from heavy snowfall.

"It is going to be a bit of a shock to the system," Mr Clarke said. "It is going to be a cold week.

"From the charts at the moment, it doesn't look like too much snow. It looks like it will land further to the east in central Europe and the coast of England is also under threat of snow showers."

Exacta Weather's long-range forecaster James Madden, who correctly predicted the 2010 Big Freeze, said he expected "heavy and widespread snowfalls across Britain and part of Ireland" for the second half of February and early March.

"Any periods of moderation are likely to be very brief in nature and will be rapidly replaced by colder and snowier conditions [towards the end of February]," he said.

"Temperatures as a whole for this period and into the first week of March are likely to be well below average."

hnews@herald.ie

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