Belfast Telegraph

Icy roads warning as temperatures drop in Northern Ireland

Forecasters say first cold snap will hit this weekend

By David Young

Winter is set to bite as temperatures plummet across the province this weekend.

Northern Ireland is preparing for the first really cold snap as the mercury is forecast to fall to below freezing.

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for ice for the north and east of the province as temperatures tumble fast.

Forecaster Graham Snell said last night: "It's going to be a very cold weekend.

"There will be a widespread frost, with temperatures reaching -2°C bringing not only a risk of ice on the roads, but also a dusting of snow on high ground."

Saturday will be even colder as winds pick up, the weather expert predicted.

Mr Snell added: "The wind chill factor will make it feel bitterly cold and wintry - though there will be some strong late autumn sunshine, too.

"The north and west of the province will be most prone to showers coming in from the Atlantic, carried by the winds."

Two yellow warnings have also been issued for the rest of Ireland by Met Ireland, which warned of plummeting temperatures, snow and ice.

The snow and ice warning came into effect at 5am this morning and will stay in place until noon tomorrow. Scattered snow showers are likely - and expected to be most frequent in Ulster and Connacht.

A mixture of sunny intervals and wintry showers are expected, bringing snow on high ground later in the day. A low temperature warning has also been issued for the Republic with temperatures expected to drop to -4°C in places. It will be in place until 11am.

The cold snap comes following a week of heavy rain which saw homes and businesses flooded in the worst-affected areas.

Hundreds of people were evacuated from their properties in Co Laois and Kerry in a wide-scale emergency operation this week.

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