Hailstone warning issued for motorists as wintry weekend expected

An unseasonable flurry of rain, hail, sleet and snow expected for the weekend
Hailstone warning issued for motorists as wintry weekend expected

The RSA said hail showers were “unpredictable and localised” and could turn a safe stretch of road into a “carpet of hailstones” very quickly. Photo: Luciana Guerra/PA Wire

Road users have been urged to take extra caution this weekend as Met Éireann has forecast showers of hail and temperatures as low as minus three degrees.

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) is advising drivers to be aware of dangerous road conditions hail showers bring, particularly on motorways and dual carriageways.

A sharp change in temperatures will arrive on Friday afternoon, bringing with it snow in some areas of Ulster, with lowest temperatures of four to zero degrees expected on Friday night.

Saturday will see a mixture of rain, hail, sleet and snow across the country, with extremely cold conditions and frost and ice expected at night.

The coldest temperatures are expected Sunday night, with lows of minus three degrees as the cold continues into the following week.

The RSA said hail showers were “unpredictable and localised” and could turn a safe stretch of road into a “carpet of hailstones” very quickly.

“This has the potential to catch drivers out if they do not immediately react to the hazardous driving conditions,” the authority said.

“Drivers need to be on guard to the potential danger posed by hailstones. If you encounter hailstones reduce your speed, without breaking if possible. Warn other drivers by using your hazard warning lights.” 

“Driving slowly in a high gear will help your tyres maintain grip even as your tyres move over the compacted pellets of ice.

“Accelerate and brake very gently and drive slowly on bends where loss of control is more likely. Avoid sudden steering movements or hard braking,” the RSA said.

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