Risk of flooding and ponding as ‘life begins to return to normal’

While Met Eireann’s Status Orange snow-ice warning remains in place for Munster, Leinster, Cavan and Monaghan until midday today, life is expected to resume “its more normal patterns” today.

Although conditions have improved this morning and the thaw continues to take hold, a Status Yellow warning is still in place for Connacht and Donegal – while many roads around the country remain dangerous and impassable.

There are further concerns that snow drifts and accumulations will lead to flooding and water ponding as large build-ups melt in some areas.

Today, Met Eireann is forecasting mostly cloudy weather with scattered outbreaks of rain. The rain will be persistent at times – especially near east and south coasts – and there may be some sleet over high ground.

Temperatures are expected to range from 3° to 6° which will continue the process of melting snow and ice.

The weather outlook is for a cloudy night tonight with recurring outbreaks of rain. There will be good dry spells too and a slight ground frost will form in places. Minimum temperatures 0° to 3° are expected.

Tomorrow Monday will be a brighter day with still a lot of cloud, but with sunny spells too. Highest temperatures are expected to reach 5° to 8°.

Water ponding

The National Emergency Co-ordination Group (NECG), which will meet again today, said: “There will be a gradual overall rise in temperatures going through the week with remaining deposits of snow continuing to melt”.

“Melting snow may result in localised surface water ponding where drains and gulleys are blocked and people are advised to watch for accumulations of melt water which could lead to flooding.

In much of the country conditions are improved, and we expect life to begin to resume its more normal patterns today.

However, in parts of the east of the country which were worst affected, the Principal Response Agencies are still in full crisis management mode – prioritising emergency services operations.

In the areas with deep snow, it is still going to take some days for conditions to improve. People should take the advice of their local authority, which is coordinating the response in their area.

The main road network, with some exceptions, is reopened. However, motorists are urged to exercise caution and drive at speeds appropriate to the conditions.

Shops are re-stocked

Public transport is resuming, with most services getting back to scheduled operations today. Intending service users should check in with operators before starting journeys.

“Many shops are re-stocked and open for business today.

“Schools and educational establishments are expected to re-open tomorrow unless in specific circumstances and areas which remain affected by deep snow and where school bus transport cannot operate. Parents will be informed of decisions by individual schools today,” said the NECG.

Meanwhile, the ESB is continuing to work to restore power today to 6,000 customers in the Wexford area.

Likewise Irish Water is working to restore supplies and lift restrictions. It is urging people to conserve water everywhere.