Conditions of recent days will result in a situation whereby the snow now on the ground from Tuesday and Wednesday night will not thaw before the arrival of Storm Emma. Huge snowfall levels are expected with snow drifts bringing large accumulations in certain areas.
"Roads will become blocked by deep snow, with many stranded vehicles and passengers".
Gardaí have advised people living in Donegal to stay indoors from 4pm onwards as Storm Emma edges closer to Ireland.
Met Éireann forecaster Evelyn Cusack warned there will be "more or less zero visibility" during the snowstorm because of the snow which is granular in nature and will blow around easily.
Highways England's head of road safety, Richard Leonard, said: "Gritters are out treating our routes around the clock, but it is still important to drive to the conditions when snow is forecast".
Sean Hogan, senior official in the National Emergency Coordination Group which oversees planning for major weather events, said the biggest concern was Storm Emma as it meets polar air over Ireland on Thursday.
The worst of the weather is due to pass by Saturday but conditions will still be poor. The heavy snow showers giving a further 5-10cm and where snow showers organise, perhaps 15-25cm.
As Storm Emma makes its way north, it should start to affect the weather in Yorkshire from Friday morning.
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