Flood warning as heavy rain sweeps across the country
Published 12/09/2015 | 02:30
Flash flooding has hit several areas as rain swept across the country overnight.
Western regions were worst hit yesterday but Met Éireann has warned that everywhere is likely to experience some rain over the weekend.
The national forecaster issued an orange weather warning for southern and western counties yesterday.
Between 35 to 50mm of rain was predicted for Connacht, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and Tipperary. Accumulations could reach up to 70mm in coastal areas.
A yellow warning for rain is in place for all other areas, where outbreaks of rain are expected to reach up to 35mm.
The rain is expected to spread towards the north and east throughout today.
Forecaster Evelyn Cusack said that 50mm of rain had fallen in the south-west and 40mm had fallen in the western counties by 2pm yesterday.
Ms Cusack noted that the sustained rainfall was due to a very slow-moving band of heavy rain. "[Rain] tends to move west to east quite quickly, but there is a band of high pressure that is blocking the spread of rain," she said.
She added that there was a risk of surface flooding in the worst-hit areas.
A spokesperson for Kerry County Council said that the local authority was dealing with minor incidents yesterday afternoon, including drain blockages. Some roads close to Tralee were impassable last night, while three roads in rural Kerry were closed. There have also been reports of flooding in parts of west Cork.
Both the PSNI and An Garda Síochána have urged drivers to take care in areas affected by the downpours.
Further rainfall and high winds are set to continue next week, along with gales at sea.
The warnings come as a number of weather stations in the western half of the country experienced their wettest August in six years.
The UK Met Office has also issued a yellow weather warning for Northern Ireland, with 40mm of rain forecast.