Monday 15 October 2018

Storm Callum: Passengers warned of cancellations during 'adverse weather'

Traffic tries to navigate floods on the Castlebar to Belmullet road in Co Mayo yesterday. Picture: Paul Mealey
Traffic tries to navigate floods on the Castlebar to Belmullet road in Co Mayo yesterday. Picture: Paul Mealey
Chart showing the impact Storm Callum will have on all Irish coastal regions at 7am tomorrow. Areas of high wind speeds are coloured green and orange. The area in red, well off the west coast, will have the strongest winds. image: Met Éireann

Kathy Armstrong and Denise Calnan

THERE could be major disruption for travellers in the aftermath of Storm Callum on Friday, with some flights and ferry crossings already cancelled.

Winds of up to 130kmh are set to batter the country as Storm Callum becomes the latest to reach Ireland - and could pose a "risk to life and property", according to forecasters.

Coastal counties are being advised to batten down the hatches with Met Éireann issuing a Status Orange warning for 13 counties.

Speaking to RTE's Six-one News this evening, Met Eireann forecaster Gerry Murphy also urged the public to "be vigilant" of the warnings that have been issued.

Those planning to travel ahead of the weekend should note there may be significant disruption after Storm Callum.

Aer Lingus said in a statement on Twitter: "Aer Lingus: A number of flights on our European network have been cancelled on Friday 12 October due to #StormCallum. Please check flight status before travelling to the airport."

People who scheduled to fly from Kerry Airport to Dublin at 7.30am tomorrow morning on Aer Lingus Regional Flight EI3201 have been advised it has been cancelled due to the storm.

A Kerry Airport spokesman said: "At this stage – it is expected that The inbound 1240hrs Aer Lingus Regional flight EI3204 into Kerry from Dublin on Friday will operate as normal as will the outbound 1410hrs Aer Lingus Regional flight EI3205 from Kerry to Dublin.

"All passengers booked on Friday morning’s cancelled flight are advised that they will receive a text message regarding the flight cancellation and asking them to contact the airline as to whether they would like to rebook or request a refund.

"Friday morning’s 0900hrs outbound Ryanair flight FR7255 from Kerry to Alicante is currently due to depart at the scheduled time. Passengers are advised to contact their airline for updates.

"Ryanair will advise passengers directly via their booking email and/or SMS text message should there are any changes in this flight."

Ryanair has said that they don't expect their routes to be affected but said that passengers will be notified if that changes.

They tweeted: “Flights are scheduled to operate, if your flight is affected you will receive an email and a text message with all the details.”

A spokeswoman for Dublin Airport urged customers to check if their flight has been affected before they set off.

She said: "Passengers are advised to check their airline’s website for latest flight updates before coming to the airport tomorrow."

Anyone travelling through Cork Airport has also been advised to keep an eye out for updates.

They tweeted: "Currently we are not experiencing any weather related interruptions to flights but as the weather is expected to deteriorate later this evening please keep a watchful eye on weather updates later and your airline’s website."

Shannon Airport and Ireland West Airport Knock have both said that their airline schedules are due to operate as normal but they urged passengers to check their flight status before setting off for the airport.

Irish Ferries cancelled the 8.55pm sailing from Dublin to Holyhead this evening "due to adverse weather conditions".

The ferry company has asked passengers to keep an eye out for sailing updates online before leaving home.

Bus Eireann has said that they will continue to review their service as Storm Callum progresses, but they advised passengers in Galway and Clare that there will be some minor changes on Route 350 and Route 401, more information on changes will be available here.

The Luas has said that all services are currently operating normally.

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has urged drivers to exercise extreme caution over the coming days.

The RSA said that with the significant risk of coastal flooding, motorists should not attempt to drive through flooded areas.

They have advised drivers to keep an eye on local weather and traffic reports and the conditions in their area, and have also issued a number of guidelines to take into account until the storm passes, particularly to expect the unexpected:

:: Beware of objects being blown out on the road;

:: Watch out for falling/fallen debris on the road and vehicles veering across the road;

:: Control of a vehicle may be affected by strong cross winds. High-sided vehicles and motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to strong winds;

:: Allow extra space between you and vulnerable road users such as cyclists and motorcyclists;

:: Drive with your headlights dipped at all times.

They also advise pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists to wear bright clothing with a reflective armband or belt.

The individual weather warnings include:

  • Status Orange wind warning for Cork and Kerry with winds expected to hit 130km/h. It is valid from today at 10pm and ends at Friday at 9am.
  • Status Orange wind warning for Donegal, Galway, Mayo, Sligo and Clare with winds expected to hit 130km/h. It is valid from 11pm tonight to Friday at 5pm.
  • Status Orange wind warning for Dublin, Louth, Wexford, Wicklow, Meath and Waterford with winds expected to hit 130km/h. It is valid from midnight tonight to Friday at 9am. 
  • Status Yellow wind warning for Carlow, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Longford, Offaly, Westmeath, Cavan, Monaghan, Leitrim, Roscommon, Limerick and Tipperary. It is valid from midnight tonight to Friday at 9am. 

Yellow warning

A Status Yellow warning has been put in place for the rest of the country.

Gusts will be between 100kmh and 130kmh during these periods.

"Along with a spell of heavy rain and high tides, there is a risk of coastal flooding and damage," said Met Éireann.

"The strongest winds associated with this event will occur during the night-time hours and Friday morning rush-hour commute.

"Even though the high winds will be the main concern, a spell of heavy and possibly thundery rain will occur too, making for an extremely windy and wet start, with squally conditions associated with the secondary cold front as it tracks north-eastwards up across the country."

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