Two national weather alerts are in effect as Storm Bella tracks across the country tonight.
The storm is bringing severe gales and heavy rain across Ireland and the UK on St Stephen’s Day.
Forecaster Met Éireann has issued status yellow wind and rainfall warnings, set to remain in place until the early hours of Sunday morning.
Gusts of over 100 kilometres per hour have already hit the island, with the warning for winds up to 65 kilometres and gusts up 110 kilometres set to remain in place until 3am.
The heavy rainfall warning also brings the risk of localised flooding, particularly along the west coast, until it is lifted at 4am.
The weather will not improve for another number of hours, according to Alan O’Reilly from Carlow Weather.
“It will be early tomorrow morning really before the worst of the winds have eased. Already we’ve seen gusts over 100 kilometres an hour along the west and north-west coast and they will continue into the early hours, along with some very heavy rain bringing some local flooding,” he said.
“Unfortunately the rainfall will be slow to clear as well.”
A status yellow snow and ice warning will also come into effect for Donegal and Leitrim from 6am on Sunday.
Met Éireann has warned of “hazardous” driving conditions across the country over the next few days, with wet and windy conditions tonight and frost expected most nights next week.
Status Yellow – Snow/Ice warning for Donegal and Leitrim
Issued 14:00 Saturday 26/12/2020 https://t.co/Xg3aMJlyuS
Wintry showers during Sunday with some accumulations possible Risk of icy stretches on untreated surfaces.
Valid: 06:00 Sunday 27/12/2020 to 20:00 Sunday 27/12/2020 pic.twitter.com/6cyPKyMEvm
— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) December 26, 2020