Motorists advised to take 'extreme care' as snow, ice and freezing temperatures grip Ireland

All the latest traffic and travel updates as the country deals with a severe cold snap.

Motorists have been advised to take 'extreme care' on some roads this morning as the country wakes up to snow, ice and freezing conditions - writes independent.ie.

The most severe of the two warnings, a Status Orange snow and ice warning, was issued last night for counties Cavan, Monaghan, Donegal, Longford, Leitrim, Mayo and Sligo and remains in force until 6pm tonight.

Those counties are waking up to a cold morning, with footage emerging online of snow falling heavily there overnight.

And gardai are advising motorists to leave exra distance between vehicles due to the conditions.

The forecast predicts more snow showers for these counties throughout the day, with up to 8cm expected in some areas. Totals will be larger on higher ground.

Residents of these counties are also advised to prepare for icy roads and footpaths this morning.

The rest of the country is under a Status Yellow warning for snow and ice, and they too are waking up to a cold morning.

Snowfall levels in the rest of the country are expected to be small over the course of the day, totalling just 3cm, but people are again advised to be careful with icy roads and footpaths expected.

Met Éireann forecaster John Eagleton said temperatures will hit as low at -3C in the northwest today. “It will be cold for the next 10 days, with temperatures hardly making it up to 10C during the day,” said Mr Eagleton.

Met Eireann are predicting that it will hit -4C in places tonight.

The Road Safety Authority has also cautioned motorists to expect the unexpected with high winds and icy conditions.

Its advice included:

  • Watch out for falling/fallen debris and vehicles veering across the road;
  • Control of a vehicle may be affected by strong crosswinds. High-sided vehicles and motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable;
  • Allow extra space between you and vulnerable road users such as cyclists;
  • Drive with dipped headlights at all times.

AA Roadwatch have already begun to advise on dangerous roads around the country.

Meanwhile the UK saw up to 20cm (8in) of snow in parts overnight.

Forecasters there said snow showers were likely to become more widespread throughout the day, and a yellow weather warning was in place for ice and snow across much of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and parts of northern and western England.

Met Office meteorologist John West said: "We saw a fairly consistent stream of snow showers overnight, and there will be a constant feed throughout the day and into Friday.

"We could see some fairly significant accumulations. Broadly speaking we're looking at 2cm to 5cm, but in more exposed areas we could see 10cm to 20cm.

"It will also be bitterly cold, with highs of 2C or 3C outside those snow showers. But the wind chill is going to make it feel sub-zero."

Cold temperatures are likely to remain well into next week, with forecasters also warning that Sunday could see further heavy snow showers.

Another yellow weather warning for snow has been issued for central parts of the UK, which is in place from 4am on Sunday until just before midnight.

Read more news of Dublin on our site.

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