Sunday 18 March 2018

Rescuers warn 'snow tourists' to avoid treacherous mountain roads

Rescue teams at the Sally Gap in Co Wicklow
Rescue teams at the Sally Gap in Co Wicklow
Allison Bray

Allison Bray

MOUNTAIN rescuers are urging people to avoid mountain roads as wintry conditions prevail.

Meanwhile, those in the west of the country were enjoying dry conditions with crisp sunshine.

The Glen of Imaal Mountain Rescue Team was forced to rescue two sets of motorists from the Sally Gap in Co Wicklow yesterday who got stuck in heavy snow.

Rescue spokesman Brendan Beirne said that while there is no reason for people not to venture into the low-lying mountain areas, he advised against "snow tourists" blindly setting off on mountain roads, especially the Sally Gap which is not gritted and can be extremely treacherous.

"If you get enough snow, the road disappears and people end up veering off it and getting stuck," he told the Irish Independent.

Meanwhile, the Air Corps sent two AW-139 helicopters to assist the RAF in airlifting food and feed bales to remote farms that remain cut off due to snow drifts in Down and Antrim.

Scattered wintry showers last night in north Leinster, south Ulster and southern coasts are expected to bring more snow flurries and sleet with icy patches.

However, with the exception of parts of the southwest, which can expect some rain or sleety showers, most areas will remain dry and bright today although the east coast may experience the odd snow flurry.

The cold spell will continue into next week with temperatures plunging below zero overnight with widespread frost and icy roads, while day temperatures will not exceed 5-7C.

It will, however, remain mostly dry with a mixture of sunny and cloudy spells.

Irish Independent

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