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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 26 April, 2018
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IT’S SAFE TO say Storm Emma arrived last night. Many areas across Leinster and Munster are blanketed in snow.

The Status Red weather alert is still in place until 6pm this evening, although the public safety advice to stay indoors has now been withdrawn.

Here’s how the snowstorm unfolded across the morning and afternoon.

'It's not over'

Sean Hogan of the National Emergency Coordination Group has warned that danger has not passed.

“All our advice about red level weather warnings remains in place,” he said.

Hogan also urged people to conserve water.

Also speaking at the centre a spokesperson for the Fire Brigade has urged people to check their fire alarms.

The Taoiseach added that all flights and public transpost remain cancelled and the situation will be reevaluated throughout the day.

He said that gardaí have handled hundreds of incidents involving stranded cars.

The Coast Guard  has also assisted 400 people and the Defence Forces responded to over 80 requests for assistance.

123,000 homes lost power yesterday but 97,000 have been reconnected. Varadkar appealed to farmers to take care while working on farms.

'We are looking toward the recovery phase' - Taoiseach

Speaking from the National Emergency Coordination Centre Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said we are now entering the recovery phase following Storm Emma.

“This will be a considerable challenege,” Varadkar said, as many roads are impassable. He added that 230 snow plows are out clearing roads at the moment.

He appealled on people to check in on their neighbours is it is safe to do so.

People of the Year awards postponed

The People of the Year awards, which were due to take place tomorrow, have been postponed because of the weather.

“We are working on finding a new date to honour winner’s,” the organisers said.

Abandoned in Phoenix Park

One driver was forced to abandon their car in the Phoenix Park in Dublin as the main road through the park is impassable.

IMG_4223 Source: John Fahy.

Banks to refund fees caused by customers being unable to lodge funds

The Banking & Payments Federation has said that banks will refund any charges caused by customers being unable to lodge funds into their accounts.

Due to the severe weather conditions many customers were unable to lodge funds to pay scheduled payments such as Direct Debits, Cheques and Standing Orders. This has resulted in unpaid transactions and fees and charges for customers. 

However banks have agreed to refund any such referral fees which were accrued between Wednesday and today. The refund process will be managed by each individual bank.

IFA urges farmers to share with neighbours

Because of the extremely difficult working conditions on farms the Irish Farmers Association is urging farmers to share with their neighbours.

The heavy snow falls and frost have left conditions almost impossible in many areas across the country.

IFA President Joe Healy said deep snow has left farmyards in a very difficult state and drifting has compounded this problem in places.

In addition, he said frozen water pipes are a major problem for dairy farmers and for drinking water on livestock farms.

The view from Cork's traffic control centre

CCTV footage in Cork city’s main garda station shows that a layer of snow has blanketed the entire city.

Can’t see the tweet, click here.

Is this Copenhagen?

Abi Dillon’s mightily impressive snow mermaid kind of makes a mockery of your snowman, if we’re being honest.

No it’s not Copenhagen, it’s outside her house, which is called the Mermaid Cottage, on the Slea Head Drive near Dingle, Co Kerry.

All-focus Source: Abi Dillon.

St. James's pays tribute to 'outstanding' teamwork as staff stay overnight

St. James’s Hospital has paid tribute to staff who stayed in the hospital overnight to look after patients.

“Everyone played their part and special mention must be given to the Catering Department who made sure hot meals were provided to all night staff and all day staff who stayed overnight,” the hospital said.

“They also ensured all staff had a hot breakfast this morning. The teamwork shown by all staff in ensuring the continuity of patient care has been outstanding and will no doubt continue as the weather emergency remains in place.”

 

The hospital reminded patients that all outpatient appointments have been cancelled for today.

Buried

Otis Cummins and his children got a bit of a shock when they opened their front door in Hollystown, Dublin 15, this morning.

otis Source: Otis Cummins

Seagulls own the town now

Deirdre O’Donnell snapped this photo on the quays in Dublin this morning.

IMG_20180302_081101-01 Source: Deirdre O'Donnell

This giant of a snowman is fond of a pint

This 11 foot behemoth may actually the Beast from the East. It’s hanging out with its dog in Skerries, Co Dublin.

skerries Source: Kate Ward

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has been speaking to RTÉ’s Ryan Tubridy, he says it may be a few days before things get back to normal:

“It is going to take the weekend to get back to normal, there’s a lot of power out as you know. At one point, there were over 110,000 homes without power but that’s down to about 30,000 now, so my sincere thanks to the ESB crews for working in the last couple of hours to get the power back on,

There will be people out to clear the roads, to salt them again and so on, it’s not possible to get to every road at the same time so it is going to take until the weekend to get back to normal but I would like to thank people who heeded advice.

“Thanks to all the people who worked, a lot of people had to go to work. Maternity hospitals still have to function, the health service still have to run. For farmers, it’s lambing season, and cows still have to be milked. So just wanted to recognise everyone who didn’t have a snow day.”

Now for a quick look around the country

Carlingford, Louth.

Enniscorthy, Wexford.

Laragh, Wicklow.

DSC_1036 Laragh in Wicklow. Source: Seamus Holden

Clogherhead, Louth.

IMG_2940 Kenneth Browne in his igloo in Clogherhead, Louth. Source: Kenneth Browne

Kiltipper, Dublin.

The M50 at the Leopardstown flyover this morning. A SUV vehicle can be see abandoned.

Thanks to Kelvin Hughes for the picture.

4313330576_026A6552 Kelvin Hughes

'Just a bit off the top there, please'

Jim Lawless of the Lawless Barber keeping the show on the road in Tallaght yesterday.

lawless Source: Jim Lawless

52 babies have been born at Holles Street in the last two days

Dr Rhona Mahony of Holles Street Hospital told Ryan Tubridy on RTE Radio One that it has been very busy at the Dublin maternity hospital.

“We’ve had 52 babies in the last 48 hours – one set of twins. We’ve had one Emma but we’ve had no ‘Beast’ yet.

“It’s been extraordinary. It has been a tremendous effort on everyone’s part. The staff has been great. We’ve had people walking two hours to work – we have a group of midwives who arrived in on Tuesday and who haven’t left.”

When dogs and heroics collide in the UK

There's a back garden in there somewhere.

This was the back garden of a home in Tallaght around 7.30am.

tallaght2 Source: Alexander Lubin

Update from An Garda Siochana

Gardaí are asking motorists to avoid unnecessary journeys. Many roads remain impassable and local authorities are prioritising national routes. If you must travel and become stuck, contact emergencies services.

Crews are working to get the major roads back up and running

If you're thinking about driving - then have a look at this

Here’s the N7 at the Red Cow around 7.30am this morning.

Thanks to Dave Rooney for the picture.

20180302_070907 (1) Source: Dave Rooney

Next up is Wexford town.

wexford Source: Lorna Burke

And now in Blessington, Wicklow.

image3 Source: Brian McDermott

Garda tells Morning Ireland that 'snow tourists' hampered the work of officers in Dublin

Tom Murphy of the garda’s Roads Policing Unit explained on Morning Ireland that gardai had a very busy night last night.

He said that many motorists had not heeded the warnings to remain indoors.

“These drivers caused a lot of difficulties for rescue crews and hampering the efforts of snowsweepers . There was a lot of drifting of snow in Lucan and Tallaght and we are still trying to identify if people are still stranded in cars.

“I am aware of one incident the snow drifted so much that the only way we could identify the car was to ask the woman to place her handbag on top of her car.”

 

Asked what excuses people had for driving in the dangerous conditions, Murphy added: “I’ve been told families were out with their kids to see the snow – there were people at the back of Dublin Airport getting stranded – increasing the pressure on rescue services to deal with them.

“I would ask on behalf of rescue groups not to use any vehicles this morning unless it’s an emergency. While city centre might look clear, there are no guarantees your journey would be clear of snow.”

More than a metre of snow fell in parts of Wexford overnight

A statement from Wexford County Council described how significant levels of snow fell across the county last night. Depths of 10 – 15 cms were reported in Wexford, Gorey and Enniscorthy areas and 5-10 cms in the New Ross area.

“Significantly more snow in Bunclody area with drifting leading to more than a metre of snow in places.

“Snowdrifts in many other areas also with extreme caution advised.”

Update from Aer Lingus

Cork avoids flooding for now

David Joyce, who is the Director of Services for the Environment with Cork County Council, told RTE’s Morning Ireland that the county looks to have escaped flooding.

However, there is still a chance of flooding when the next high tide hits the county.

Update from the National Emergency Coordination Group (NECG)

 

A red level warning is in place for snow with strong easterly winds for Munster, Leinster and county Galway. An orange level warning is in place in the rest of the country.

A spokesman for the NECG said: “The blizzard conditions have passed and the public safety advice to shelter indoors is withdrawn.

“Conditions are and will remain very difficult and the public are advised continue to exercise high levels of caution for their own safety in the extreme cold, accumulated snow and icy conditions underfoot.

“In particular, it will take some time to get roads open again and people should listen for local updates on road conditions.”

Homelessness update from the Peter McVerry Trust

Last night a total of 115 people were allocated beds in the Extreme Cold Weather Accommodation in a sports centre in Dublin’s south inner city

On the street, Peter McVerry Trust staff were out in the city centre engaging with rough sleepers until 5.30am this morning. They identified a total of 21 people, 6 of whom were persuaded to access extreme cold weather shelter and one person who was accommodated in a garda station.

A total of 14 people refused access to shelter.

Ever seen the M50 like this before?

This photo was taken at 4pm yesterday around junction 13 on the M50. Any other day and you could expect seriously heavy traffic.

Thanks to Fiona Hayden for the picture.

20180301_152409 Source: Fiona Hayden

Update for Connacht and Ulster

For Galway, Met Eireann has extended its red level warning for snow and blizzard like conditions until 6pm today.

For the rest of Connacht and Ulster, forecasters  issued an orange level warning for scattered heavy snow showers and icy conditions until 6pm.

The AA has issued a serious warning to anyone thinking about driving

Not good news on the forecast

If you live in Munster and Leinster, you can expect the following today: more snow, more wind and sub zero temperatures.

Public transport

A reminder that all public transport is off today as a result of the weather. Services are expected to resume in the next two days depending on the conditions.

Here's the latest live electricity fault map

The pins show small faults while the larger icons indicate large faults on the system.

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 07.05.36 ESB's Powercheck. Source: ESB

Number of people stranded in their cars saved by fire brigade overnight

David Kavanagh of Dublin Fire Brigade told RTE’s Morning Ireland that the fire service experienced a very busy night.

He said: “As the winds got up we started getting a few call outs. About 1.45am we had a major power outage, we dealt with 214 ambulance cases.

“Ambulances were stuck in the snow. Some of the crews dug themselves out.

“We had a number of calls around country areas. We did have several people stuck in cars who needed help. A number of people were stuck around the Julianstown area off the M1.”

Dublin Fire Brigade dealt with a number of incidents overnight

Some motorways closed as AA Roadwatch warns that conditions are 'treacherous'

In Tipperary, the M8 is closed northbound due to treacherous conditions. AA Roadwatch said that roads around Naas, Kildare Town, Leixlip and Athy are extremely poor and that travel should not be attempted.

Nearly 24,000 homes are without power this morning

Speaking on Morning Ireland this morning, an ESB spokesman said that 23,800 homes are without electricity.

The vast majority of them are in a triangle from Dundalk into Kildare and Offaly and then south county Dublin.

North county Dublin has been seriously affected – 9,000  arewithout power in Swords, Lusk, Skerries.

Met Eireann have just tweeted the latest forecast for today

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