Met Eireann warns of sub-zero temperatures within a few days as Ireland is hit by a cold spell of weather.
The first signs of winter are expected towards the end of this week, with values reaching -1 ° C in places on the night of Sunday.
Carlow Weather expert Alan O’Reilly said Sunday will be the day that will bring the first noticeable changes that will last until next week.
He wrote: “The weather models show very little rain, but temperatures will drop from Sunday and a few cold spells are possible next week. The heating bills will rise! “
He added, “Latest graphs from the GFS weather model for upper air temperatures. You can see milder weather giving way to much cooler air from Sunday for the next few days, and then possibly the second cold spell later next week.
“The latest ECMWF forecast also shows ingress of cold air, but could be short-lived.”
In the meantime, on Friday we can still enjoy the last relatively mild weather with highs of 13 ° C and largely dry conditions.
A Met Eireann forecaster said: “A largely dry day on Friday and again mostly cloudy with the occasional light spurt. There will be some rain or drizzle patches mainly affecting southern and western coastal areas and hills. Highest temperatures of 10 to 13 degrees with moderate southwest wind.
“Generally cloudy overnight with some drizzle or foggy spots. In the northwest, there will be persistent rain towards dawn on Saturday. Minimum temperatures of 7 to 10 degrees with moderate southwest wind.
“On Saturday morning a rain band spreads over Connacht and Ulster, which in the afternoon extends southeast to the rest of the country. A clearance for colder conditions with occasional showers will follow later in the day in the west and north. Moderate southwest winds turn from the northwest during the day and become fresh. Highest temperatures of 9 to 12 degrees, but get colder later in the day.
“Cold and windy on Saturday evening with showers in the western and northern coastal regions, partly with hail. In other places it is mainly dry with long clear phases. Minimum temperatures of 2 to 5 degrees with moderate to fresh north-westerly winds. “
From Sunday on, conditions will get very cold, with night lows reaching -1 ° C on both Sunday and Monday.
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A forecaster added: “Sunday seems to be going to be a cold and stormy day with sunny spells and some showers. The showers mainly affect coastal areas to the west and north, with some drifting in along the shores of the Irish Sea. Some of the showers will be hail. Maximum temperatures of 6 to 9 degrees with strong north winds. Cold and mostly dry on Sunday night with long clear phases. Frost is expected across the country, with temperatures as low as -1 to +3 degrees with light northerly winds.
“A cold and fresh start on Monday with a lightening of frost in the morning to leave a dry and bright day with sunshine. The maximum temperatures range from around 6 to 9 degrees with a light, changeable wind. A cold night on Monday evening with frost and a few patches of fog, the frost will later dissipate from the northern counties as the clouds become thicker and bring a few patches of light rain or drizzle there, minimum temperatures of -1 to +4 degrees.
“The frost will spread to the southern counties on Tuesday morning with clouds and some patches of rain from the north. It will stay mostly dry during the day, albeit with a lot of clouds and some drizzle. Maximum temperatures of 7 to 11 degrees with a moderate west to northwest breeze. “