What to expect over the next few days following snow alert in Northern Ireland

The Met Office has issued a snow warning for Northern Ireland with between 5-10 centimetres expected to fall on Thursday. Credit: UTV

Snow warnings are already in place for Thursday and Friday as cold weather will settle across Northern Ireland over the week.

Meteorologists say snow is perhaps one of the most difficult weather elements to get correct and a half a degree in temperature can be the difference between heavy rain or snow.

This is where uncertainty comes into the forecast. The system that could potentially bring snow hasn't actually formed yet and until it does it can be really challenging to pinpoint the level of disruption that could occur. 

What do we know already? 

We know that the freezing level, the point at which rain will start to freeze, is very close to the surface.

Freezing level across the UK

We also know that a system will develop in the Atlantic that contains milder air and when it. mixes with the cold Arctic air it could make the perfect recipe for snow. 

If the weather systems mix right this is likely to develop by Wednesday and that could bring heavy snowfall by the end of the week. 

So what could happen at the end of the week?

The Met Office have already issued a yellow warning for the end of the week but this is definitely something to keep an eye on as it is possible if the system is a little further north or a little bit stronger than we think, the warnings could be changed to an Amber

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