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Reader Darren Englishby's photo shows heavy snow at Glencullen, near the Dublin-Wicklow border. Darren Englishby

Met Éireann warns of 'blizzard conditions' as first snow arrives

Drivers are warned of tricky motoring conditions as the south-east gets Ireland’s first snow of 2013.

MET ÉIREANN has warned of ‘blizzard conditions’ in some parts of the country as the day continues, as the south-east of country begins to receive its first snow of 2013.

Met Éireann says heavy snowfall will be seen in some places today and tonight over the northern parts of Leinster and Connacht, and in Ulster, as well as on higher ground in the Dublin-Wicklow region.

Snow of ‘between 5 and 10 centimetres’ is possible in some areas, it said – forecasts which appear to be borne out by reports of significant snowfall around lunchtime

The latest reports for around the country, at 3pm, showed the lowest temperatures at Knock Airport, which registered 0°C, while temperatures of 2°C were more widespread in coastal countries across the northeast and northwest.

Drivers have been urged to take caution nationwide, however, with most of the country having seen rain at some point of the day in addition to some sub-zero temperatures.

A number of roads around the country are impassible due to flooding; areas in Shankill, Bray and Greystones are among those affected, while there is also flooding in Wicklow town and Rathdrum.

There is also excess surface water on the Urlingford/Freshford Road in Co Kilkenny, while in Co Roscommon, the Lisnamucklagh/Gortananny Rd (R363) through Ballyforan is almost impassable due to flooding.

Spot flooding is also affecting the N59 road between Westport and Castlebar in Co Mayo.

The Road Safety Authority has urged motorists to travel with extreme caution around the country, and to leave a significant braking distance between themselves and the next car.

Motorists are also advised to leave extra time to complete any journeys, and to stay alerted to weather forecasts.

The snow, which has already made its presence felt in Britain, has also led to significant air travel disruption. Passengers intending to travel to Britain are advised to check their airline’s website before travelling to the airport.

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