Friday 24 November 2017

Second bout of Arctic weather to last for days

Don Lavery

A white Christmas may not be on the cards, but it will be bitterly cold for the next few days, with snow likely to dump on Dublin today as the north and north west along with Britain took the brunt of some of the worst winter weather for 25 years.

Gardai said many roads around the country were in a very dangerous condition following a night of snow showers and freezing temperatures.

Met Eireann said the Christmas weekend is at the limit of its forecasting, but with an evolving situation it is expected to be milder for Christmas. Before that, however, temperatures are expected to plunge to minus 10C in some areas, particularly in the North.

There will be a slight respite on Thursday, with temperatures only dropping as low as minus 4C.

Meanwhile, road conditions remain treacherous through the affected areas, with gardai advising people to take extreme care on secondary and rural roads.

In Limerick, roads were said to be very slippery; in Cork, drivers were told to drive with extreme care, while conditions were extremely icy around Galway city.

Bus Eireann said most of its services were operating as usual with some delays and diversions, but services cancelled included buses from Dublin to Derry, Cavan to Athboy and Drogheda to Donore.

Dublin Bus said its services were operating as normal, while Irish Rail said full services were operating, including mainline raid and Dart. The Luas in Dublin also said it was operating normally, as were Dublin, Cork and Shannon airports.

The Defence Forces said they were concentrating on transporting healthcare workers and patients to and from medical facilities as well as assisting with snow clearance.

In the North, Belfast International Airport, which was closed on Friday, was opened yesterday, but delays and cancellations were expected.

Flights in other European countries have also been affected, and British Airways cancelled a number of flights from London's Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

As with all transport services, people were urged to check airline, bus, train and other transport websites before they travel.

Sunday Independent

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