#StormDeirdre: Status Orange weather warning as serve winds and rain sweep country

Met Éireann has issued a Status Orange wind warning as parts of the country are set to be hit by severe gusts of up to 130km/h this afternoon as a result of Storm Deirdre.

The national status orange wind advisory will be in place from 3pm on Saturday for the whole country and will stay in place until midnight.

There is widespread rain across the country this morning, which is expected to turn into heavy, possibly thundery falls, particularly in the south and south-west.

"There will be heavy rain at times in all areas on Saturday,  becoming very windy with potentially damaging squally winds in western & southern counties in the late afternoon & these severe winds transferring eastwards during the evening," said the national forecaster.

West or northwest winds will reach mean speeds of 65km/h with gusts of 100km/h generally, with disruptive and damaging gusts to 130km/h likely for a few hours in western and southern counties in the late afternoon and transferring eastwards during the evening.

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There is the potential for "severe and hazardous" conditions with western and southern counties set to feel the force of the wind from the late afternoon.

'Disruptive and damaging gusts'

"Saturday will be windy with strong and gusty southeast winds, but a period of stormy conditions, with some disruptive and damaging gusts will develop for a few hours this afternoon in parts of Munster and Connacht. These severe winds will then transfer to northern and eastern counties during the evening and early tonight."

There is also a Yellow Rainfall warning for all of Ireland in place from now for the rest of the day.

Heavy rain during Saturday will lead to accumulations of 30 to 50mm with some mountainous areas exceeding these limits, Met Éireann advised.

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Looking ahead to tonight, it is to be extremely windy or stormy in eastern and northern areas early tonight, but the winds will begin to die down. Rain will give way to occasional, heavy showers, with a risk of hail and thunder. It will also turn cold overnight, as temperatures fall to between 1 and 4 C., with frost developing in places.

Sunday is said to be cold, with widespread rain or hail showers during the morning, some prolonged in places.

Met Éireann have said there is to be "very unsettled and disturbed weather is expected through the week ahead, with well above normal rainfall and some strong winds at times also."

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