The weather bureau has forecasted terrible conditions to persist over the coming days. The status yellow warning will be in effect from 3 am until 11 pm on Thursday, with “rain, sleet, and snow” expected to spread across the country.
According to Met Eireann, the wintry mix will be accompanied by strengthening easterly winds, and “accumulations of snow are expected in many areas along with icy conditions.” The weather service has warned of possible hazardous driving conditions, travel disruption, and poor visibility during the weather warning.
In anticipation of the upcoming weather, Carlow Weather’s Alan O’Reilly took to social media to issue a sombre update, warning that “regardless of whether it is rain, sleet, or snow that falls tomorrow,” the Met Eireann ensembles show over 20mm of precipitation for some areas between Thursday night and Friday morning, with over 30mm on higher ground.
A separate status yellow low-temperature and ice warning will be in effect throughout Ireland, with widespread icy stretches expected on Thursday night and Friday morning. The alert will be in place from 21:00 on Thursday, March 9, until 10:00 on Friday, March 10.
In addition to the nationwide snow and ice alert, a separate snow-ice warning has been issued for Leinster, Cavan, and Monaghan. It will be in effect from 9 pm on Thursday until 7 am on Friday. The warning predicts that sleet and snow will slowly clear eastwards on Thursday night and early Friday, with further accumulations of snow anticipated.
Given the weather forecast, it is crucial to take precautions and stay safe. The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has issued guidelines to drivers travelling in adverse weather conditions. It recommends slowing down, increasing braking distance, avoiding sudden movements, and using headlights to increase visibility. Additionally, the RSA advises carrying a winter emergency kit, including a blanket, torch, and a high-visibility vest.
The Irish public should also take precautions while walking on icy and snowy surfaces. The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) recommends wearing appropriate footwear with good traction, taking short steps, and walking slowly. Additionally, it advises avoiding carrying heavy loads that could affect balance and stability.
The current weather conditions in Ireland follow a week of unseasonably mild temperatures, with some areas experiencing sunshine and temperatures reaching the mid-teens. This sudden shift to freezing conditions could be attributed to a change in weather patterns.
In recent years, Ireland has experienced increasingly unpredictable weather patterns, with more frequent occurrences of extreme weather events, including heatwaves, floods, and snowstorms. As a result, there is a growing consensus among experts that climate change is a contributing factor.
Despite the challenges posed by extreme weather events, Ireland has made significant progress towards reducing its carbon emissions. The government has set ambitious targets to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, with an interim target of reducing emissions by 51% by 2030. The country has also invested heavily in renewable energy, with wind power accounting for approximately 30% of the electricity generated in Ireland.
In conclusion, the nationwide snow and ice alert in Ireland highlights the importance of being prepared and taking precautions during adverse weather conditions. The Irish public should follow the guidelines issued by the RSA and HSA and stay safe during the coming days. The sudden change in weather patterns also emphasises the need for continued efforts to address climate change and reduce carbon emissions.