“Icy stretches” and snow could hit parts of the UK as heavy downpours sweep across the country from the west over the weekend, forecasters have said.
Western Scotland, Northern Ireland, north-west England and North Wales could face frosty conditions, caused by showers expected to last until Sunday morning, according to the Met Office.
Forecasters also warned of wet and windy conditions across other parts of the country on Saturday with parts of the country set for “very unsettled weather”.
Flood alerts have been issued across England and Wales as rising water levels leave rivers at risk of overflowing.
The Environment Agency has put 11 alerts in place in England, for areas such as Bristol and Somerset, as well as six in Wales, including for the upper Severn in Powys.
On Saturday night, temperatures could plummet as low as minus 4C in higher areas of Scotland but averages of 2C are expected for most of the rest of the UK.
The latest view from above shows a lot of cloud cover across much of western Europe, including the UK 🛰️
However, a change to brighter conditions with shower clouds and sunny spells is underway across the UK, with this regime moving east from the North Atlantic this afternoon🌦️ pic.twitter.com/lTmcMM54GV
— Met Office (@metoffice) January 8, 2022
Met Office meteorologist Jonathan Vautrey said: “There are no official ice warnings out at the moment that we have issued but we are sending out a message in general that there is an isolated risk that any wet surfaces along with these showers could lead to icy stretches.
“This is mainly due to the showers that will be feeding in to the west.”
A pulse of heavier rain across the Greater Manchester area and parts of Cornwall will continue on Saturday afternoon and clear before nightfall, he said.
Higher areas in Scotland, the Pennines and Snowdonia are also likely to see some snow before the weekend is over.
Mr Vautrey said any ice would be likely to have melted away by Sunday morning, when the showers are expected to ease.
“Most of the ice risk will have abated before people are getting out and about,” he said.
However, commuters are set to endure a “cloudy, drizzly” start to the week, with another band of rain forecast across most of the UK on Monday, he said.
High pressure coming from the south on Wednesday is set to bring more settled weather in general from midweek onwards, with dry conditions expected for most of the country.