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Irish Independent
Irish Independent
Eoghan Moloney, Paul Hyland and Laura Lynott

Weather Ireland: Met Éireann issues nationwide Status Orange ice warning with snow warning for three counties

A flight delayed due to ice at Dublin Airport. Photo: Miriam McDonald

Met Éireann has updated its weather warnings as Ireland is gripped by a big freeze.

A Status Orange warning for low temperatures and ice has been issued for the entire country and comes into effect from 5pm on Sunday until noon on Monday as temperatures are likely to fall below -5C in many areas.

It comes as Status Yellow snow warning was earlier issued for counties Dublin, Wicklow and Kildare. It comes into effect from 11pm tonight and lasts until noon on Sunday.

Met Éireann meteorologist Mathew Martin said localised "snow showers" are expected tonight and several centimetres is expected.

"It will be very cold with yellow warnings for freezing fog, low temperatures and ice out for the country tonight and tomorrow," he told

"We have a snow warning out for Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow. That will be localised but certainly we're expecting a few snow showers and in areas that are hit by the showers there could be a few centimetres. Over the high ground in Wicklow there could be a little bit more.

"The main thing to watch is there could be icy stretches tomorrow."

He warned the severe cold it likely to last well into next week.

"The cold spell is staying with us certainly up until Thursday or Friday.

"Tomorrow night is going to be very, very cold. There's a Status Orange low temperature warning from tomorrow night until Monday morning, with temperatures getting down to -5C widely on Sunday night. The temperatures then on Monday will remain below 0C in many places," he added.

It comes as another 50 flights were cancelled at Dublin Airport today as a result of yesterday’s severe disruption, however airport operator DAA has said the airport is “fully open and operational” today.

Some 17 flights, including 15 Ryanair and one Aer Lingus flight, which were scheduled to depart from Dublin today have been cancelled.

Another 21 flights which were due to land in Dublin today have been cancelled, including 15 Ryanair services and four with Aer Lingus.

A further 12 flights scheduled to land and depart at Dublin Airport today were cancelled yesterday.

Meanwhile, scores of flights to and from the airport have also been delayed today.

Cancelled departures from Dublin Airport today:

  • 06:20 FR818 Edinburgh (EDI) Ryanair
  • 06:25 FR1046 Toulouse (TLS) Ryanair
  • 06:25 FR5066 Memmingen (FMM) Ryanair
  • 06:30 FR8018 Paris (BVA) Ryanair
  • 06:35 FR5112 Riga (RIX) Ryanair
  • 06:35 FR5563 Glasgow (GLA) Ryanair
  • 07:00 FR678 Cardiff (CWL) Ryanair
  • 07:30 FR114 London (LGW) Ryanair
  • 08:10 FR2781 Vilnius (VNO) Ryanair
  • 08:25 FR4266 Verona (VRN) Ryanair
  • 09:15 BA4461 London (LCY) British Airways
  • 09:25 FR5141 Rzeszow (RZE) Ryanair
  • 09:30 FR5199 Birmingham (BHX) Ryanair
  • 10:40 FR5416 Birmingham (BHX) Ryanair
  • 11:35 FR5133 Billund (BLL) Ryanair
  • 11:45 FR9444 Turin (TRN) Ryanair
  • 12:20 EI117 Washington (IAD) Aer Lingus

Cancelled departures from Dublin Airport today:

  • 00:40 FR5303 Budapest (BUD) Ryanair
  • 08:50 EI118 Washington (IAD) Aer Lingus
  • 08:50 EI3401 Donegal (CFN) Aer Lingus Regional
  • 09:00 FR819 Edinburgh (EDI) Ryanair
  • 09:00 FR5564 Glasgow (GLA) Ryanair
  • 09:10 EI151 London (LHR) Aer Lingus
  • 09:10 EI203 Manchester (MAN) Aer Lingus
  • 09:20 FR679 Cardiff (CWL) Ryanair
  • 10:10 FR8019 Paris (BVA) Ryanair
  • 11:05 FR115 London (LGW) Ryanair
  • 11:15 FR1043 Toulouse (TLS) Ryanair
  • 11:40 FR5067 Memmingen (FMM) Ryanair
  • 12:05 FR5200 Birmingham (BHX) Ryanair
  • 12:45 BA4462 London (LCY) British Airways
  • 13:15 FR5417 Birmingham (BHX) Ryanair
  • 13:20 FR5115 Riga (RIX) Ryanair
  • 14:00 FR4267 Verona (VRN) Ryanair
  • 15:10 FR7149 Vilnius (VNO) Ryanair
  • 16:00 FR5134 Billund (BLL) Ryanair
  • 16:00 FR5142 Rzeszow (RZE) Ryanair
  • 17:10 FR9445 Turin (TRN) Ryanair

Both Aer Lingus and Ryanair have apologised for the ongoing disruption and passengers have been advised to check their flight status online.

It comes after 143 flights due to depart or land were cancelled yesterday.

Passengers scheduled to travel across the weekend are being advised to check with their airline before going to Dublin Airport.

Thousands of passengers had their flights cancelled and many more faced hours long delays at the airport on Friday as airlines struggled to de-ice their planes.

In a statement issued this morning, airport operator DAA said the “knock on” effects of yesterday’s disruption are leading to further cancellations and delays today.

“Dublin Airport is once again fully open and operational today (Saturday). However, as a knock-on from the issues faced by airlines yesterday, a number of flights have been cancelled. Passengers are advised to check with their airline for the latest info regarding their flight,” a spokesperson said.

“All surfaces at the airport - runways, aprons etc - were pre-emptively treated through the night. DAA’s teams were on hand in the terminals overnight to help passengers seeking to rebook their cancelled journeys from Friday, providing water etc to those waiting at airline desks.”

Meanwhile, Met Éireann has issued a Status Yellow snow warnings for Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow, which runs from 11 o’clock tonight until 12 o’clock tomorrow afternoon.

"Snow showers will lead to accumulations in places, most substantial over high ground,” Met Éireann said. 

Status Yellow conditions brought widespread snowfall to several counties across Thursday night and Friday morning.

The forecaster has also updated its Status Yellow warnings for freezing fog, low temperatures and ice until noon tomorrow.

"A sharp frost and further icy stretches will set in on Saturday night as temperatures dip to -5 degrees in places,” Met Éireann said.

A Status Yellow freezing fog warning, which was due to expire at midday today, has also been extended until 12pm tomorrow.

"Pockets of freezing fog are expected, causing potentially hazardous travel conditions,” Met Éireann said.

The forecaster has warned that where freezing fog occurs, visibility will be very poor, making driving conditions “very dangerous”.

Freezing fog is even more hazardous than normal fog as the droplets are supercooled and can form as ice on windscreens.

Temperatures fell to – 1.3C at Dublin Airport overnight.

Gerry Murphy of Met Éireann said Ireland is now “really only at the start of a very cold spell” and that people need to be aware of the forecast as conditions may get dangerous.

There is likely to be a “cumulative” effect of several days and nights of sub-zero weather, leading to temperatures getting lower and lower, while hail, sleet and snow is likely to continue to fall on coastal counties in the coming days.

There will be a widespread severe frost into the weekend, with Met Éireann now predicting this cold snap will last all the way through next week.

Snow may accumulate on the ground in the coming days for counties where wintry showers occur as the cumulative effect of “temperatures” reducing all the time make conditions more treacherous.

Temperatures are expected dip to as low as -4C in places overnight going into Saturday.

Meanwhile, the temperature fell to -3C at the airport on Thursday night, while a thick blanket of snow also fell.

Among the passengers affected by yesterday’s disruption was John O’Reilly (29) from Clondalkin, south Dublin, who told he and his friends had been due to fly on a 7.20am Ryanair flight from Dublin Airport to Barcelona on Friday morning.

The group arrived at the airport at 4am and quickly went through security.

“We boarded by 7.10am but nothing happened,” Mr O’Reilly said. “Then we were told the plane had an icing issue and it would take an hour. Then the pilot said this every hour for three or four hours, that it was going to be another hour.

“We were on the plane for four hours on the runway. And people were really hungry and thirsty.

“We finally got off the plane at 12.30pm. We’re now running round the airport, trying to get another flight.

“We’re stressed out. We’re due to play in a card game tournament in Barcelona and we missed the first day. And the tickets are €220 each. Four of us are here at Dublin Airport, impacted by this.

“We were going to meet a friend from England over in Barcelona. Now they are over there on their own.”

Despite his experience Mr O’Reilly said he didn’t blame Ryanair staff and felt they were doing their best in a tough situation.

On Friday, Ryanair said: “Due to severe ice overnight, a small number of Ryanair flights from Dublin Airport have been delayed/cancelled this morning.

“Affected customers have been notified and advised of their options. We sincerely apologise to affected customers for these weather-related delays/cancellations which are entirely beyond our control.”

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