Warning of 'hazardous' conditions and 'bitterly cold' weather

Weather update from Met Éireann

Met Éireann is warning of "hazardous conditions" as a status yellow ice warning takes effect today and will remain in place until noon.

The national weather forecaster says: 'A band of wintry precipitation will sink southwards with the potential for black ice/freezing rain on surfaces.'

A status yellow low temperature warning, meanwhile, will kick in at 10pm tonight until 10am tomorrow morning (Friday).

The latest outlook says it will be "bitterly cold" both by day and night. Treacherous conditions with some severe frosts, icy stretches and dense freezing fog in parts too. Some hail, sleet or snow showers, but a good deal of dry weather overall.

Today's weather forecast gives for an icy start to Thursday with black ice and patches of freezing fog leading to hazardous travel conditions. Well scattered showers will continue to sink southwards this morning, turning wintry in parts with a light dusting of snow on some lower levels. Sunny spells will follow, as wintry showers become confined to northern coastal counties. However, after-dark showers of sleet and snow will move into parts of the east. Highest temperatures of just 1 to 5 degrees, in light northerly or variable breezes.

Treacherous conditions into tonight too with a severe frost setting in quickly after dark along with some icy stretches. There will be some wintry showers of sleet and snow, mainly across east Leinster with some lying snow possible. Bitterly cold with lowest temperatures of -5 to -2 degrees in a light northerly breeze. Some freezing fog will develop also.

Much of the country will be dry on Friday with low winter sunshine. Very cold though with icy stretches, some lying snow, as well as freezing fog in parts. Wintry showers will affect some northern and western coastal counties, possibly thundery near the coast. Highest temperatures ranging from 0 to 4 degrees, in light northwest or variable breezes.

A widespread sharp to severe frost will set in Friday night along with icy stretches. While many areas will be dry, some showers of hail and snow will affect Atlantic coastal counties, but falling as rain near the coast. Lowest temperatures of -5 to zero degrees in light westerly or variable breezes.

Generally dry again on Saturday with low winter sunshine but isolated wintry showers will occur too. Frost and ice lingering in unsheltered areas, along with some patches of freezing fog. Highest temperatures of only -1 to +4 degrees, in light northwesterly breezes.

Dense freezing fog will form in parts on Saturday night leading to impaired visibility. A widespread sharp to severe frost is expected and icy stretches. Lowest temperatures of -5 to zero degrees.

Temperatures struggling to rise above freezing for most on Sunday with frost, ice and freezing fog persisting throughout the day. Mainly dry apart from isolated showers in some coastal margins. Highest temperatures of -2 to +2 degrees in light, variable breezes. Widespread frost and ice overnight with lows ranging from -6 to -2 degrees. Wintry showers of sleet and snow will move in closer to the Atlantic coast

The cold weather is likely to continue next week but uncertainty in the fine details at this stage.

The current winter advisory period continues until Monday morning but may be further extended, say Met Éireann.