Monday 22 December 2014

More stormy weather on the way

Published 06/01/2014 | 12:47

Large parts of the country are again enduring severe conditions
Large parts of the country are again enduring severe conditions

Parts of Ireland are being ravaged by stormy weather with forecasters warning of severe coastal flooding and gales of up 120kmph.

Motorists have also been advised that driving conditions will be hazardous, with the threat of strong crosswinds, fallen trees and electrical wires.

While daredevil surfers flocked to Mullaghmore Head in Co Sligo, where waves as high as 11.8 metres were recorded, seafront towns in the south and west of the country were a washout.

Snarling waves off Co Clare caused localised flooding in the coastal town of Doolin.

Coastguard stores at the town's harbour were completely washed out, while seafront houses at nearby Lahinch were ravaged by huge swells.

High tides battered the coasts of Galway, Cork and Waterford, but despite a landslide at Plunkett Train Station last week, normal service resumed today.

Fota Wildlife Park in Co Cork kept its gates closed, while high tide at Salthill, Co Galway, flooded the Promenade.

The Marine Institute recorded waves on Monday of nearly 12m on its M6 buoy on the Porcupine Bank off the north-west.

Waves of the same height were also recorded at its Waverider buoy off Belmullet, Co Mayo.

Meanwhile, the Road Safety Authority (RSA) warned continued high Atlantic waves, heavy showers and continued thunderstorms would cause treacherous conditions for drivers.

It advised motorists to take extra care on the roads, where aquaplaning could cause them to lose control of their vehicle.

It also warned it takes longer to stop on a wet road and that fierce cross winds could leave drivers particularly vulnerable.

The RSA also urged drivers to steer clear of flooded roads, warning those that appear shallow could be much deeper.

"Sometimes roads can be closed due to their fragile state after wet weather or because they are blocked by flooding," it said in a statement.

"Road users should always follow recommended routes and obey signs closing roads to traffic. Watch out for washed out roads, earth slides, broken water or sewer mains, loose or downed electrical wires, and fallen or falling objects."

Met Eireann, which has an orange alert weather warning in place until around 7pm on Monday, has forecast gusts between 90 and 120kmph, with thunderstorms throughout the day.

More than 4,000 homes have been left without power following the latest onslaught of stormy weather.

ESB Networks said crews were working to repair faults caused by strong gales, with homes worst hit in Castlebar in Co Mayo, Ennis in Co Clare, Killarney in Co Kerry, Bandon in Co Cork, and some in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford.

A spokeswoman said power should be returned by teatime on Monday.

Press Association

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