Status Red warning issued as Storm Barra closes in
A difficult week ahead on the weather front...
Storm Barra is ready to make its presence felt across Ireland, with Status Orange weather warnings already signalled as extremely windy conditions are forecast.
On top of this, Met Éireann has officially issued a Status Red marine warning.
That warning, which is valid from 3am until 11pm on Tuesday (7 December), refers to winds that are expected to reach storm force 11 on coastal waters from Mizen Head to Loop Head to Slyne Head.
The good news is that Storm Barra is expected to gradually weaken by mid-week.
The bad news is that the overall forecast for the week ahead isn't terribly pretty.
According to the latest Met Éireann outlook, it will be cold, wet and generally unsettled across the board.
Starting with Monday (6 December), you can prepare for a cold and blustery day, with some sunny spells and scattered showers mixed in.
The showers should prove most frequent in the west and north of the country, with hail, isolated thunderstorms and some wintry falls expected on hills.
Maximum daytime temperatures on Monday are expected to range between 4 and 7 degrees.
Monday evening should see showers ease off early enough, with a mix of dry and mildly frosty conditions coming into play. However, southeast winds will increase to gale force as outbreaks of heavy rain develop.
Wrap up warm as temperatures are set to drop between -1 and +3 degrees.
Tuesday will become "extremely windy" as Storm Barra draws in from the Atlantic.
— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) December 5, 2021
Met Éireann warns of a band of heavy and squally rain sweeping northeastwards during Tuesday morning followed by widespread stormy showers. Falls of sleet and hill snow are anticipated, particularly across the northwest.
"Severe and damaging" gusts of wind are also forecast, especially on coastlines in Munster and Connaught. Gale to storm force winds will veer west and northwest, bringing the potential for coastal flooding.
Maximum daytime temperatures of 6 to 9 degrees are indicated.
Tuesday night brings similar disruption as the centre of Storm Barra tracks over Ireland. The national forecaster is warning of frequent squally showers – some wintry with hail – and isolated thunderstorms amidst a cold night with lowest temperatures of 1 to 4 degrees.
Wednesday looks a little less ominous, though it will still be cold, windy and showery. Highest daytime temperatures of 4 to 7 degrees are forecast, with the lowest ranging between 1 and 5 degrees.
Thursday will bring rain to the southwest here and there but the rest of the country should be mostly dry with bright spells and just a few intermittent showers. Highest temperatures of 6 to 9 degrees / lowest temperatures of 1 to 5 degrees.
The early indicators for Friday present a cold and bright day with sunny spells and passing showers of rain or hail. However, it should get cloudy in the southwest later in the day, with rain taking over after dark.
Maximum temperatures of 5 to 8 degrees are expected.
As for the weekend – "fairly unsettled" is the general outlook as of Monday morning, with spells of rain moving in from the Atlantic at times.