Met Éireann warn of 'exceptionally cold weather' next week

But over the weekend it will become "even colder with widespread overnight frosts and bitter by day with a marked windchill".

Instead, the temperatures at the North Pole itself will be flirting with the freezing mark for the next several days, as higher-than-average temperatures are pumped into the Arctic from the Atlantic and Pacific sides.

Communities in remote areas have been urged to stay wary of blocked roads and loss of power.

"We are expecting there to be some convergence banding which makes it very hard to pinpoint where the heaviest showers will fall".

It is expected Monday will bring the start of the coldest spell of the winter across the UK.

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Notably, though, they said that "there is nothing to suggest that members of the public are at risk" at this stage. Government websites in other countries were also affected, Helme noted.

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This disruption can lead to a change in wind direction from our usual westerly winds to colder easterly winds.

It's as if someone opened the freezer door in North America's kitchen, and let all the cold air drain out toward the midlatitudes.

The alert, issued at around 9am this morning, warns the freezing weather "could increase the health risks to vulnerable patients and disrupt the delivery of services".

Its forecast added snow showers will continue in the east and southeast on Sunday before becoming "more widespread on Monday". Where this occurs there is the potential for accumulations of 5-10 cm locally whilst nearby locations may see much less frequent showers and only small accumulations of 0-2 cm in places. Weather computer models, which previously showed marked variation, are now aligning, giving greater confidence about the timing and location of the cold weather.

Then in the wee hours on Tuesday, the second warning will extend from the East Midlands through to northern Scotland. There's also the possibility of streamer development where a constant line of showers develop say at the southern tip of The Isle of Man and dump large quantities of snow in a narrow area.


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