County prepares for gale-force winds

Met Eireann has issued a serious weather warning for the end of 2012 with strong to gale force southerly winds and with a risk of severe gusts in Atlantic coastal regions over the coming days.

Met Eireann has issued a serious weather warning for the end of 2012 with strong to gale force southerly winds and with a risk of severe gusts in Atlantic coastal regions over the coming days.

Residents and business owners are being warned to ensure that all bins are secured property and any objects which could become airborne, causing damage, such as garden furniture, trampolines, swing sets etc are either properly secured or stored away.

Heavy rain is also expected to spread from the Atlantic through today, (Friday) although temperatures will remain, for the most part, mild.

This follows on from last weekend when the county was buffeted by strong winds which brought down trees and branches. Nationally, over 1,700 were left without power, most of these in the West of Ireland following winds of up to 100km an hour last Sunday evening.

Met Eireann is now predicting very unsettled weather for the rest of December and into the first days of 2013. Forecasts say that weather in today (Friday) will be extremely windy at first, with very strong southerly winds and a risk of stormy conditions and damaging winds in coastal areas of the west and north, including here in Co Leitrim.

Rain will clear eastwards early in the night and winds are expected to die down overnight but will return with some force on Saturday, December 29. Conditions will be extremely windy, with strong to gale force southwesterly winds and with a risk of severe and damaging gusts in western and northern coastal areas. Co Leitrim will also see scattered showers during the day with a risk of hail and thunder later on. Further scattered showers are expected on Saturday night and temperatures are set to fall quite significantly to between 1 and 4°C although strong winds are expected to eliminate the risk of any significant frost.

On Sunday, December 30 the weather will improve with a mainly dry morning however there will still be some blustery conditions, especially near the coast.

Rain will spread across most of the country on Sunday evening and this will continue with scattered showers into New Year’s Eve on Monday. Maximum temperatures are not expected to top 9°C and it will be cold overnight as temperatures fall to just 1 or 2°C. Met Eireann are warning of some frosty conditions on New Year’s Eve night and are asking all party goers to take care when travelling over December 31, 2012 and into January 1, 2013.

Preliminary forecasts suggest that January 1 will be cold and bright with sunny spells and a few scattered showers.