Freezing air from Russia is to grip Ireland in what is set to be the coldest late February in years.

The cold blast - dubbed the ‘beast from the east’ - will see freezing temperatures, severe frost and disruptive accumulations of snow nationwide.

Met Éireann has issued a Status Yellow weather warning, which is in place from today until next Friday March 2.

Exceptionally cold weather is forecast for next week with significant wind chill and severe frosts.

The temperatures will begin to drop from tomorrow. On Sunday night, temperatures will fall to as low as -3C overnight with a widespread sharp to severe frost.

Monday will be mainly dry with snow flurries in eastern areas.

It will be very cold on Monday night with a severe frost and the risk of snow showers along northern and eastern coasts.

It will turn progressively colder from Tuesday onwards with severe frosts and snow showers becoming more widespread.

Met Éireann said some disruptive accumulations are likely, especially in the east and southeast.

The cold weather is part of a Sudden Stratospheric Warming, which refers to a rapid jump in temperatures in the stratosphere, which can then lead to the onset of cold weather.

This disruption can lead to a change in wind direction from our usual westerly winds to colder easterly winds.