Hail, sleet and snow showers are forecast to fall on the island shortly as a Met Éireann weather warning comes into force this afternoon.
The status-yellow snow and ice warning for the Republic takes effect at 4pm, while a similar alert for Northern Ireland from the UK Met Office will begin at 8pm. Both warnings will remain in place until 11am on Friday.
Met Éireann has warned of scattered showers of hail, sleet and snow, along with icy stretches, from Thursday evening through to Friday morning.
The showers will be most widespread in the west and north of the country, where some accumulations are likely, and will lead to hazardous travelling conditions in some areas. Isolated thunderstorms will also occur, the forecaster said.
Showers will turn increasingly wintry through the rest of today, some of which will be heavy with #hail and #thunderstorms 🌨️⛈️
Hail can bring hazardous driving conditions, so drive safely during any heavy hail showers 🚗🏍️#BeWinterReady pic.twitter.com/JE5ENEcw6aAdvertisement
— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) January 6, 2022
Met Éireann said the day will grow gradually colder, with showers turning “increasingly wintry” through the afternoon and evening.
Temperatures will hover around freezing tonight amid widespread wintry showers, with -1 to +2 degrees expected.
Snow is expected to accumulate in parts of Connacht and Ulster and on high ground, while there will be some hail and scattered thunderstorms in Atlantic coastal counties.
Friday morning will bring widespread showers of rain, hail, sleet and snow. However, the forecaster said they will become less frequent and turn more to rain and sleet during the day. Highest temperatures of 4 to 8 degrees are forecast.
Met Éireann said the weekend’s weather will continue to be “unsettled”, with rain or showers and strong winds at times.