WINDS GUSTING UP to 130km per hour are sweeping Ireland as a severe weather system – Barney – hits the country.
Status Orange warnings (the second most severe category) are in place for Munster, Leinster, Galway and Roscommon. A less-serious Status Yellow warning has been issued for Cavan, Monaghan, Donegal, Leitrim, Mayo and Sligo.
Speaking this evening, Met Éireann forecaster Klara Finkele said the worst conditions were in the east, with mean wind speeds of 70 to 80km. Damaging gusts of up to 130km were recorded in Dublin and Kilkenny between 5pm and 6pm.
The two warnings are in effect until 9pm. Clear spells will develop after that, but there’ll be more rain overnight and into the morning.
We’ve all the latest info below on rail, road, air and sea travel. For information on power cuts click here (thousands of homes are without service this evening).
After some minor delays this afternoon, there have been some more serious problems on the rail network in recent hours.
A power failure near Killiney means southbound DARTs are only operating to Dalkey, and there are delays to services between Limerick and Limerick Junction due to high winds at Dromkeen.
In the latest development, Docklands Station in Dublin has also been closed.
Gardaí are appealing to road users to exercise extreme caution this evening in light of the weather warnings.
Local authorities are reporting numerous fallen trees around the country…
Here’s the general advice from gardaí:
With high south-westerly winds forecast motorists are advised to slow down, maintain a safe driving distance and always expect the unexpected. Gardaí are advising drivers of high sided vehicles, motorcyclists and cyclists who are particularly vulnerable to strong winds to take extra care.
Anyone who sees falling or fallen debris is asked to contact gardaí.
They said no one should stop and get out of their vehicle to remove something from the road, and that drivers should allow extra time for their journeys.
TheJournal.ie reader Bopper Holland send us the above pic from the northside of Dublin this afternoon, with this message:
“A tree collapsed on the Malahide Road, narrowly missing our bus, quick braking by the driver stopped an accident, myself and a load other lads got off and cleared the road of debris, I think all involved deserve a mention.”
There are flight delays and cancellations at all three major airports – in Dublin, Cork and Shannon. Anyone with travel plans is being urged to contact their airline before leaving for the airport.
Irish Ferries has cancelled a number of crossings due to the stormy weather.
Scheduled Dublin to Holyhead services at 8.45am and 2.30pm are off, as are services travelling in the opposite direction originally scheduled for 11.50am and 5.15pm.
Passengers are being accommodated on other sailings, the ferry company has said.
Councils in both Clare and Limerick have advised members of the public to avoid travel and remain indoors where possible during the strong winds.
“It is important that members of the public pay attention to Met Éireann’s advisory as this weather system has the potential to deliver Storm Force 10 winds to Limerick for a period during the afternoon to early evening,” the city and county council said.
Members of the public are advised to remain indoors where possible during the storm and to stay away from rivers and other water bodies. The council is on full alert and will respond to emergencies as they arise or as it is safe to do so.
Paul Moroney, Senior Engineer, Clare County Council said Clare is likely to be affected to a greater extent than most other areas with the impact extending for a considerable distance inland.
“The advice is to defer any planned road journeys during this period unless necessary and to take whatever precautions or measures are normally appropriate during such weather conditions. In particular take care in coastal and exposed areas.”
Age Action is asking people to remember their older neighbours and to consider their needs.
Michael Fitzgerald send us this photo of the storm hitting the GAA field in Herbertstown, County Limerick this afternoon…
With reporting from Michelle Hennessey.