Graphic weather satellite image suggests Storm Caroline set to pound Ireland today

Storm Caroline is expected to bring choppy conditions to the North Sea

The first week of December will end on a stormy and chilly note in Northern Ireland as Storm Caroline hits.

Devon's gritters will be out in force this evening and overnight with the possibility of snow showers and icy conditions forecast.

The warning, which comes less than three weeks before Christmas, also advised the public that road, rail, air and ferry services could be affected by the weather - and that there is a "good chance" of power cuts.

Thick snow fell over many parts of the United Kingdom overnight with Storm Caroline taking freezing temperatures further south.

"Strong northwest winds may cause drifting of the snow in places with blizzard conditions possible across northern Scotland".

Road surface temperatures won't be as low as in recent cold spells, but they will be sub-zero in large parts of the county.

The Met Office said: "A spell of heavy snow is possible over some central parts of the United Kingdom during Sunday".

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As much as five centimetres of snow is "likely" to fall in Northern Ireland over the next 24 hours, according to the Met Office. "Possible travel delays on roads".

The cold front moves in today and forecasters are predicting strong winds of up to 110km/h in some places, as well as up to 3cm of snow.

Met Office meteorologist Marco Petagna said: 'Wednesday will see the last of the mild days, with temperatures in double figures, between 10 and 12 degrees (50F-54F). It follows Storms Aileen, which arrived in September, and Brian, which hit Britain in October.

In the Republic of Ireland, Met Éireann [Irish National Meteorological Service] has also issued weather warnings for wind, snow and ice on Thursday and Friday across Ireland.

Scottish Transport Minister Humza Yousaf said: 'Our trunk road operating companies will be out patrolling and gritting as required.

Winds have started to pick up as Storm Caroline approaches the UK.

CNR International said a total of 69 of the 159 staff on Ninian South, about 240 miles from Aberdeen, would be leaving the structure as a precaution.



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