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Picture from rural Waterford this morning. CarinaFJ

AS IT HAPPENED: Status Red warning nationwide as Ireland braces for blizzard conditions

Stay with us for the day as we bring you the latest updates.

Good afternoon from

A status red warning is in place for the entire country as forecasters predict that the whole nation is to be hit with blizzards.

What has fallen in the last day is considered to be just a small percentage of the snowfall expected. Gale force winds are also forecast with severe risk of coastal flooding.

Everyone across the country has been ordered to stay indoors from 4pm today such is the risk to health.

Here are all the updates from this morning on what is expected to be the biggest snowstorm to hit Ireland since 1982.

We’ll be back to you this afternoon with further updates.

That’s all for now, folks.

We’ll be back later this afternoon with more live updates.

An Garda Síochána issued the following statement shortly after 12pm today:

Forecasters predict the nation is to be hit with blizzard-like conditions with zero visibility later tonight, which will extend countrywide.

Heavier snow is expected in from the southeast with thunderstorms and hail over Munster and south Leinster. Gale force winds with a risk of coastal flooding is expected

Everyone across the country has been advised to stay indoors from 4pm today due to Storm Emma and the Beast from the East.

Remember to check in on elderly and vulnerable neighbours.

Galway University Hospital, Mayo University Hospital and Portiuncula University Hospital have cancelled all routine electives and outpatient appointments today and tomorrow.

More information about cancellations can be found here.


Dublin Airport

13 flights departed and 13 flights arrived at Dublin Airport this morning.

Speaking to RTÉ News, Siobhan O’Donnell from Dublin Airport said that runway visibility has been dipping in and out throughout the morning.

Many flights have already been cancelled this morning and further cancellations are expected later today.

“We’re working with our airline customers to find out their plans for the rest of today and tomorrow,” O’Donnell said.

We’re handing out water, we’ve reinforced our wifi, we have limited bedding and we’re trying to resource extra food and beverages.

I would encourage passengers to check in with their airlines to check in what’s happening with their particular flight.

Shannon Airport

Shannon Airport is fully operational but is urging people to check with their airline before leaving for the airport.

Cork Airport

Compacted snow on the runway at Cork Airport has led to the airport being closed this morning.

All remaining Aer Lingus flights today have been cancelled into Cork Airport. The airline won’t operate any flights into Cork Airport tomorrow either.

Ryanair has cancelled the remaining flights into Cork Airport today. Passengers are being asked to check with the airline for updates.

Kerry Airport

Ryanair has also cancelled all flights into Kerry Airport for the rest of the day.

The airport will close at 2pm today.

Dart services between Pearse Station and Bray are still suspended due to flooding caused by a tidal surge.

Irish Rail said it is very unlikely that the line between Pearse Station and Bray will reopen today.

COSTLY WEATHER is reporting that the snowy weather is likely to cost retailers “hundreds of millions of euro” between revenue, employee costs and repairs.

Lorraine Higgins, deputy CEO of business group Retail Excellence Ireland, said: “It’s two and a half days of lost trade at best. That’s a considerable amount of money to lose and costs will certainly run into the hundreds of millions of euro.”

As well as having to deal with lost sales today and tomorrow, Higgins said shop owners may also have a hard time enticing people in-store during the usually busy weekend period if the bad weather persists.

If you’re planning on travelling by Luas in Dublin today make sure to head out soon.

All Luas services are finishing in 20 minutes, at midday today.


Here’s Met Éireann’s latest composite radio for the last hour.

It shows the latest snowfall moving in across the country.

Check out this beautiful photo, taken from Crosshaven, Co. Cork looking across at Roche’s Point yesterday.

Credit: Pat Murphy

IMG_5542 Pat Murphy Pat Murphy

Make sure to keep all phones, tablets and laptops that have 3G and 4G access charged this morning.

If you happen to lose power in your home later today, this could mean you will still be able to get updates from ESB Networks on most faults on


If you’re worried about your dog or cat – or gerbil – during the big freeze today, here are some tips from Pet Mania:

  • If you don’t have a shed to move your pet’s kennel into, then consider housing them indoors to ensure they are kept safe from the cold temperatures today and over the coming days. This is particularly true for cats. You can also use extra bedding for insulation, such as straw and hay in their sleeping areas.
  • Wrap up canine friends with dog coats for extra warmth.
  • Make sure they have plenty of fresh water and food – pets might also need a little extra food as they will be burning energy to stay warm. Keep a check to ensure that water supplies do not freeze over.
  • If your pet is feeding outside, use plastic bowls instead of metal to prevent their tongues getting stuck if it is too cold.
  • Similarly to humans, dogs and cats can get frostbite. Pay extra attention to any signs of discolouration, pain or unusual blisters on their ears and paws.
  • Finally, don’t forget about your garden birds who would appreciate some high-fat foods like peanuts to boost their energy reserves.

So, in short, if possible at all take some inspiration from Harvey below and take your pet inside and wrap them up warm.


Cork City Council is advising locals that there will be “very high astronomical spring tides” from today until Monday.

A tidal surge and periodic strong southerly and south-easterly winds are also expected to hit the region over the next few days.

The council has warned that these combined factors will result in tide levels higher than the natural tide levels.

The natural cycle of high tides for the following days in Cork is predicted for the following times:

Screen Shot 2018-03-01 at 11.09.47

Here are the conditions on Dublin’s M50 at the moment:

All lanes are currently open and crews are working to keep it that way.

People are being strongly advised to avoid unnecessary journeys as the weather worsens.

Tesco Ireland has confirmed that all stores will close at 2pm today due to the Status Red weather alert.

All Tesco stores will open again tomorrow, subject to weather conditions.

Tesco Ireland said this morning that grocery home shopping deliveries will resume subject to weather conditions on Saturday.

“We are closing all stores today at 2pm in line with the guidance from the government to ensure that all our colleagues have time to get home,” Christine Heffernan, corporate affairs director of Tesco Ireland said.

Today’s meeting of the National Emergency Coordination Group is currently underway.

The group is due to brief the press on latest updates at 12.20pm.


There are currently disruptions to Dart services in south Dublin as a result of flooding at Salthill.

All Dart services have been stopped south of Pearse Station for the time being.

Irish Rail has said it will provide further information as soon as it’s available.

Dun Laoghaire Habour has also closed public access to both the east and west piers as a result of the rising sea levels.

“Gale force winds and high sea levels have led to waves coming over the top of the pier. Stay safe and stay away. Be aware of the Status Red weather warning,” Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said.


Dublin Aiport is still open and some flights are still departing and arriving.

“Our crews are working to keep runway, taxiways and apron areas clear. Airlines are de-icing their aircraft,” a tweet from the airport said.

Aer Lingus has said it plans to operate the vast majority of short-haul services this morning.

It also plans to operate all scheduled flights to and from North America today.

All other Aer Lingus flights are to cease operation by 3pm today.

People are being urged to check with their airlines before travelling to the airport today.

Not all heroes wear capes

Latest road incidents

These are the major incidents on roads across the country in the last hour, according to the AA.

If you needed any more convincing about how cold it is – well here you go.

Catherine Lennon, who is in Kinsale, Cork, has informed us that there is no power or water at Old Head lighthouse since last night 8pm. She said: “Heavy snow blizzards are hitting us now.”


Shannon Airport fully open

Shannon Airport remains fully operational this morning with airport staff working through last night in challenging conditions to keep the runway operational.

Services are operating normally, with the airport’s first flights to Stansted and Heathrow departing on time. The inbound Aer Lingus Boston flight landed on time, while the Norwegian, Newburgh flight is expected to arrive at 10.20am.

Shannon confirmed that it handled 20 flight diversions from Dublin and Cork Airports starting from 04.20 yesterday morning until midnight last night.

Update on homeless figures

Sixteen people in the city centre and 14 in the Dublin region, were engaged and supported but declined to come into emergency shelter. They will be re-engaged today.

In Kildare, one additional person was accommodated by the Peter McVerry Trust after they called the out of hours emergency freephone number. This brings to 14 the total number of emergency placements provided by Peter McVerry Trust in the county in the past 48 hours.

Here's the latest from Met Eireann

It might be March but Christmas FM is back for one day only

Nope, you read that right.

A statement on their Facebook page reads: “We are back for one day only with live shows and DJs tomorrow, online via our apps, website and wi-fi radios for 1st March from 8am-8pm. We will have snow and weather updates and all the best snow and winter songs you can throw a snowball at!”

More service closures here

All RehabCare, National Learning Network (NLN) and Rehab Enterprises services in every county will remain closed for the rest of the week.

A statement from the group read: “We are closely monitoring the weather warnings which are being issued by Met Éireann, as well as communications from the National Emergency Coordination Committee. We will update latest information on our social media accounts and website.”

Ulster says no

All Ulster Bank branches will be closed today and Friday to ensure the safety of staff and customers.

Health service staff won't be penalised for having to take the day off

Coldest temperature since 2016 recorded in Cork


NUI Galway is to close on today and Friday due to the weather conditions.

All classes, lectures and labs are cancelled, and university services will remain closed for the day.

A statement read: “Staff and students based on hospital campuses or on work placement should contact the relevant hospital contacts, placement coordinator or line manager for local arrangements.”

Gardai have issued a warning

Gardai are advising motorist and all road users to use caution on our roads.

A spokesman said: “Leave sufficient room between you and the car in front and drive within a speed where you can stop in time.”

Why there was a nationwide status red warning

Met Eireann’s Evelyn Cusack, speaking on Morning Ireland, explained why a nationwide red warning was put in place.

Cusack said that the exceptionally low temperatures combined with the wind led to the nationwide alert. She said that windchill in the west could get as a low as -10 degrees in parts of the west. There may not be snow in parts of the west but the freezing conditions will kick in the coming hours.

Who'd be a journalist?

While the public is being warned to stay indoors – journalists across the country are sticking on their woolies and hitting the roads.

Some have even managed to get hit by a canoe – while on land.

Latest traffic conditions from AA Roadwatch

AA Roadwatch has warned that some parts of the country are impassable due to snow and ice.

In the capital, snow is lying on routes around the city and county, especially on routes around the north and north-west of the city and county.

Conditions are “treacherous along parts of the M1, M50 and on the N3″, according to the motoring body. They warned motorists to take extreme care, especially at interchanges.

Routes around Wicklow are dangerous due to the snow and ice – especially the Sally Gap and large areas of western Wicklow. It’s a similar situation in Kildare and extra care is advised on the M9 at J3 Athy.

School's out

In case there was any confusion, all schools around the country are closed.

Dublin Airport is up and running

While the airport is operating well so far this morning, passengers are being urged to check with their airline if their flight is on-time, delayed or cancelled.

Over 100 vulnerable homeless people were housed in Dublin last night

Last night Peter McVerry Trust allocated 102 beds in the Extreme Cold Weather Emergency beds in the sports centre in Dublin’s south inner city.

According to the charity, the team successfully encouraged additional rough sleepers to come in yesterday. However, 16 people in the city and a further 14 across the Dublin Region accepted support but declined an emergency bed.

All court sittings have been cancelled

With the Red Alert Weather warning now extending nationwide – All courts in the country will not sit on Thursday and Friday.

Court users should read notices on for local arrangements or contact local offices after the weather event to ascertain new dates for cases

The latest on the Luas

The Luas Red Line service is operating as follows: The Point to Tallaght and Saggart (Full Line)

The Luas Green Line service is operating as follows: Broombridge to Brides Glen (Full Line)

There will be a tram every 30 minutes and services on the Luas Lines will stop today at midday.

That's not ideal

Most of the country has today off work – most.

But many are already up and working – not least our pals over at Met Eireann.

What we know so far

Here’s a recap of what we know:

  • It is predicted there will be 25cm of snow today and 40cm by lunchtime on Friday.
  • The public has been told to stay indoors from 4pm this afternoon until the alert ends.
  • There will be no bus services operating across Leinster and Munster.
  • There will be an extremely limited Luas service.
  • Irish Rail will continue operations this morning – except to/from Docklands, and no Phoenix Park Tunnel services – but will begin shutting down at 12pm.

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