Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Met Office warns of ice hazard and severe floods on the way to Northern Ireland

Liam Law (3) pushes his sister Kate on the swing at Shaw’s Bridge, Belfast
Liam Law (3) pushes his sister Kate on the swing at Shaw’s Bridge, Belfast
Two dogs bask in the winter sun
Three donkeys in the snow-covered hills of the Glens of Antrim

It may soon be time to pack away the snow shovel — but you might have to dig out the sandbags instead.

As the snow starts to melt away, forecasters are warning that Northern Ireland could be hit by floods today and into the weekend.

The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning as a band of heavy rain is expected to sweep across Northern Ireland.

But the heavy downfalls will also bring warmer air with them — which will in turn cause extra flooding from melting snow.

“Falling on saturated ground and combined with melting of a deep snow cover on higher ground, this brings an enhanced risk of flooding,” a spokesman for the forecaster said.

“While the rain may ease later, the associated problems may continue into the weekend. The public should be aware of an increased risk of flooding.”

“The public are advised to take extra care and be aware of the risk of further disruption to transport.”

Lara Caldwell, forecaster with Meteogroup, said: “On Saturday it’s looking like a bit of an improvement, largely dry with sunny spells and highs of 7C-8C.”

Saturday night through to Sunday will see the return of the rain.

“There will be some snow in places on Sunday but not widespread snow like we’ve been seeing in recent days,” she said.

“At the moment there is probably some compact snow lying around and it may be starting to thaw a bit.

“With nothing else coming to replace it, it should start to melt away.”

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