Sunscreen at the ready; Ireland to hit 30C today

Sunlovers cool off at the 40 Foot in Dublin yesterday
Sunlovers cool off at the 40 Foot in Dublin yesterday

Temperatures are set to top 30C in parts of the country today but the heat will spark thunderstorms, some of them violent, forecasters say.

A warm blast of continental air yesterday brought some more respite from the grey skies which have been a feature of the disappointing summer weather so far.

The heat and sunny spells sent thousands of people to beaches across the country.

Sea fog did, however, spoil things in some places along the south and east coasts.

The Coast Guard has appealed to sun-seekers to treat all waterways with respect as temperatures rise even further today, with midlands counties set to be the hottest.

Louise Heraghty from Met Éireann has said temperatures will drop by up to 10C again by tomorrow, after the brief blast of central European heat over Ireland.

But in the meantime, a yellow weather warning is in place. She also warned that today's high temperatures could spark thunderstorms.

"We are certainly looking at temperatures of 28C or 29C in the midlands for Tuesday and perhaps a few degrees higher than that," she said.

Ian Carruthers, from Irish Weather Online, issued a thunderstorm warning from 3pm today until noon tomorrow. He said that the continental air moving up from France this morning would bring some "highly unstable air" to Ireland.

Mr Carruthers explained: "These factors suggest super-cells are possible. Even with their isolated nature, likely threats will be gusts of up to 120kmph, large hail and even a tornado."

He said that the northwest was most likely to see a thunderstorm this afternoon.

Furthermore, he warned of a repeat system tonight or tomorrow in the Irish Sea which could affect the east of the country.

"Not everyone will see thunderstorm activity but where it does occur it will be severe at times," he added.