Flight delays at Dublin Airport as Storm Barbara starts to batter Irish coast
Dublin Airport has confirmed there are several flight delays on one of the busiest days of the year due to storm Barbara.
Due to a change in the direction of strong winds, airport officials have had to switch runways.
There are about 245 flights between noon and 5pm today and 50 of them are delayed.
However a spokesperson said the average amount of time people will wait is about 40 minutes.
The spokesperson said the weather is expected to improve in the afternoon.
“There are some delays at the minute, but they are currently not significant,” said a Dublin Airport spokesperson.
Dublin Airport later tweeted; "Some flight delays @DublinAirport due to high winds, weather expected to improve in the afternoon. Check with your airline for latest info [sic]."
Earlier the Irish Coast Guard has issued a stark warning ahead of the Christmas Holiday period.
Storm Barbara will bring winds of up to 120km/h when it "side-swipes" parts of Ireland today.
In a statement the Coast Guard said: "Storm Barbara, which will give rise to stormy conditions, is forecasted to blow through today and there is a risk of some stormy weather returning on Christmas Day."
They have issued a warning to all water enthusiasts to be careful in the high tides and dangerous seas.
"The Coast Guard is requesting members of the public planning on engaging in any coastal activities to first check that it is safe to do and to be mindful of the risks and life threatening dangers that can arise without warning.
"Many people will be engaging in outdoor activities along the coastline, be it on exposed coasts, cliffs, piers, harbour walls, beaches, promenades or other coastal areas.
"The simple safety message is; Stay Back, Stay High, Stay Dry."
Met Éireann says a status orange weather warning is in place for coastal regions and high grounds of Donegal, Galway and Mayo.
The forecaster is predicting that there will be southerly winds, later west to southwest of 65 to 75 km/h with severe gusts between 100 and 120 km/h.
A status yellow wind warning is in place for the rest of the country.
A number of ferry services from the UK have been cancelled today as a result of the weather.
Passengers are advised that they can be accommodated on the Ulysses cruise ferry services at other times and to check notices.
Stena Line, which operates from Dublin to Holyhead and Rosslare to Fishguard, warned that some of its services may be affected.
"Winter Storm Barbara is set to bring wet and windy conditions to the UK," it said.
"Unfortunately this may cause disruption to some of our scheduled sailings this Friday and Saturday."
The Road Safety Authority urged drivers, cyclists and pedestrians to exercise caution.
The Coast Guard has advised that a general improvement in weather conditions conducive to outdoor activities, is forecasted from St Stephen’s Day.
"Christmas Day Swims are a popular pursuit and the Coast Guard is urging the public to only participate in organised swims where medical support and lifeguards are available.
"Lone swimming should be avoided and all swimmers should be cognisant that time in the water should be kept to a minimum as even the most experienced of swimmers can easily succumb to cramp or cold water shock."
The three Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Centres based in Malin, Valentia and Dublin, along with the Coast Guard Helicopter service and Coast Guard Volunteer units will remain operational over the holiday period.
Dublin Fire Brigade have seen the lighter side of Storm Barbara, posting this hilarious message: