Met Eireann warns of 'shock to the system' in days ahead
Met Éireann has warned the public to prepare for a "shock to the system", as temperatures drop following the mildness of the winter so far.
As snow settled yesterday on higher ground across the country, forecasters said it would remain cold but mainly dry for the week. Motorists have been warned by the AA to drive with extra care and to prepare for sub-zero temperatures at night, with a risk of black ice.
Met Éireann said there would be some showers this afternoon that could turn to hail or sleet. One forecaster said that though temperatures would not be overly cold, it would feel significantly different to the previous mild conditions, which would be a "shock to the system".
Overall, the country will see a marked change in weather with the cold snap set to last into the weekend.
Overnight, the rain will have cleared eastern coastal counties but scattered showers - some wintry - will continue to affect Ulster and coastal counties in the west.
In other areas, tonight will be dry with clear spells and frost developing with lowest temperatures of 2C to -1C.
Tomorrow will be cold, bright and blustery with sunny spells and scattered wintry showers, mainly in coastal areas of the west and north.
Tomorrow night may see thickening cloud bring some rain or sleet into western and northwestern areas and winds will turn southwesterly.
Met Eireann have warned overnight temperatures could fall as low as -2c.
Wednesday will remain cold and rather cloudy with rain or sleet in the west extending countrywide and bringing some snow on higher ground.
Showers will clear during the day, becoming breezy, and the night will again bring cold and frosty conditions, with showers in the north and west.
The AA has warned of snowy conditions in some parts of the Wicklow Mountains, with ice also reported on some routes nationwide.
They have urged motorists to drive with extra care.
Meanwhile, the AA has also warned that flooding remains a problem on a number of roads, with many national and regional roads still affected.
In Co Wicklow, gardaí have told motorists to avoid the Wicklow Gap due to snow.
In Co Cork, the Fermoy-to-Ballyduff Road remains closed at Ballinalacken and Kilmurry South due to a minor landslide.
In Co Clare, the N67 Kilcolgan-to-Lahinch Road is still closed between Bellharbour and New Quay due to flooding, while also in Clare, the Gort-to-Corofin Road (R460) remains impassable at Lough Bunny.
In Co Monaghan, the Castleblayney-to-Keady Road remains flooded at the Oram Road junction, while the Ardee Road is impassable outside Carrickmacross and the Cootehill-to-Ballybay road remains closed.