Weather: Northern Ireland facing coldest winter since 2010 as Russian 'beast from the east' sweeps in
Northern Ireland is bracing itself for the coldest winter since 2010 as a biting cold airflow, chillingly dubbed 'the beast from the east', will roll in from Russia.
The Baltic blasts are not expected until after Christmas, according to the Met Office 90-day forecast, but a taste of things to come is set to hit this week with the first freeze of the autumn set to take hold.
The unseasonably mild temperatures of early November will plunge as Northern Ireland sees its first concerted period of over-night frost this week.
This morning commuters in many places, especially the southern counties of Northern Ireland, were expected to have awakened to frosty car windscreens as temperatures were predicted to go sub-zero to minus one centigrade.
Light patchy frost and fog was the Met Office warning.
Weather forecasters say the frost and fog will lift slowly through the morning with some sunny spells.
However, cloud and patchy rain will spread east during the afternoon and it will feel rather cold with a maximum temperature of 8C.
The Met Office says the outlook for tomorrow to Thursday is for a few showers possible tomorrow, otherwise many places will be dry with overnight frost and fog likely, becoming windy on Thursday.
The weekend is expected to see night-time temperatures back below freezing again.
The chilly conditions come amid warnings that Northern Ireland could be facing the coldest winter since 2010, with Russian winds set to sweep in.
In a 90-day forecast, the Met Office predicted biting easterly winds in the New Year with the risk of freezing conditions. In 2010, Northern Ireland suffered sub-zero temperatures and heavy snow lasting months.
The PSNI say motorists need to pay due care and attention on the roads in the winter and be able to adapt to changing conditions and that even the most experienced drivers can find themselves getting into difficulties when the roads are icy. Police advice is that before you set off on your journey:
Make sure your vehicle is in winter roadworthy condition
- Check that your tyres meet the legal requirements. Tyres that do not have the legal tread will seriously affect your car's traction and steering
- Clear your windscreen properly of ice and snow
- Check brakes, lights, and oil and washer fluid levels
- Carry water and de-icer in the car with you and if it is a longer journey bring a blanket.