Weather warnings for travellers
Published 27/12/2012 | 12:00
A weather warning has been issued to road and sea users as gusts of up to 140km/hr are expected to batter the west of the country.
The Irish Coast Guard and Road Safety Authority (RSA) have advised people to take extra care.
People are being told not go out on exposed coasts, cliffs, piers, or beaches during the inclement weather as high seas can pose a hazard.
Declan Geoghegan, Irish Coast Guard Manager, also warned people not to attempt to cross fast running rivers or floods as they may be stronger and deeper than they think.
"Flooded urban areas can contain hazards such as submerged manholes and downed power lines," he said. "The combination of tides, gale warnings, high sea conditions and swollen rivers may result in very dangerous conditions."
Elsewhere the RSA warned road users to be aware of debris being blown out onto the road and vehicles veering, particularly high sided vehicles and motorcyclists. Pedestrians and cyclists should also wear bright clothing with reflective armbands or a reflective belt. "Take extra care when near traffic or crossing the road in extremely windy conditions as a sudden gust of wind could blow you into the path of an oncoming vehicle," it added.
Later, forecasters said strong to gale force southerly winds will gust at 100 to 130km/hr.
Winds will be strongest after dark on Friday evening along parts of the north-west and west coasts with Donegal expected to be one of the worst affected areas, they said.
Met Eireann said that winds will reach storm force 10 at times on coasts from Slyne Head in Galway to Erris Head in Mayo and Malin Head, north Donegal.
The RSA urged people to make necessary journeys as early as possible to avoid being caught in the storm. "The RSA are appealing to people to check in with older relatives and neighbours ahead of the stormy weather promised so as to avoid making trips during the stormy and wet conditions," a spokesman said.