1,000 effected by major flooding in Laois and Ireland faces second national weather warning this week
Temperatures in Ireland are set to plummet this weekend, following a week of heavy rain and flooding in areas. Weather experts are warning of hazardous black ice conditions as this “Polar low” takes hold.
A national status yellow warning is effect across the country until midday on Saturday, November 25, as a “polar low” brings snow and ice to Ireland.
Three rivers burst in Laois
After a week of heavy rain hundreds of people spent Thursday night in emergency accommodation following devastating flooding as three rivers burst their banks in Mountmellick, County Laois. Two housing estates were evacuated by emergency services, while hundreds of other residents in the town had to leave their homes.
It’s estimated that 1,000 people were affected.
Locals describe the floods as the worst in living memory. Laois County Council’s Director of Services, Kieran Kehoe, said more than 50mm (1.9 inches) of water fell in two hours.
The rainfall this week was heaviest in the Dublin region where there was localized flooding and some road closures.
However now the country faces into its second weather warning in a week with temperatures set to become “severe” on Friday night.
Snow and freezing temperatures
In Ulster and Connacht scattered snow showers are expected to be frequent over the weekend.
The public are being urged to wrap up warm as temperature are set to drop to -4C (24.8F) in some areas. Temperatures will only reach between 3C (37.4F) and 4C (39.2F) during the day.
Gerald Flemming of Met Eireann, Ireland’s meteorological center, said that November has been mild so far, but the cold snap is normal for this time of year.
He told RTE Radio One "It's really a big change from what we've had so far in November which has been a relatively mild month. This time last year we were looking at minus 7 degrees so it's in no way unprecedented.”
The Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland is opening its doors to the homeless people of Dublin during the predicted ‘Polar Low’ that will bring freezing weather conditions across the country. Click on link for more details.https://t.co/VlBoRd6Zct pic.twitter.com/gcMUkwoHzu— Islam Ireland (@Islamireland) November 23, 2017
Sadly, for many, Flemming said snow is not expected for Christmas.
"There's no sign of anything like we had back in 2010 when we had that exceptionally cold period. I'd never bank on a White Christmas though. At this stage we just can't tell what it will be like coming into Christmas."
Black ice on the roads
The AA Roadwatch is warning drivers to drive slowly this weekend. “Stopping distances are 10 times longer on snow and ice and gentle maneuvers are the key to safe driving.
"Use major routes as they are more likely to have been gritted than secondary routes."