Weather Watch

Live updates as storm winds of up to 160km an hour sweep across the country.

Conor Pope Wed, Feb 12
 
LIVE: Weather Watch

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  • This event has now ended
  • 09:20
    Is it over yet?

    No.

    The weeks and weeks of alarming weather alerts continue this morning with a Code Red hanging over Cork and Kerry with winds of up to 160km threatened until at least 2pm.

    People have been warned to take great care when travelling and on embark on journeys if absolutely necessary.

    It's not so bad elsewhere in the country but it is still by no means good.

    Good Morning. I am Conor Pope and I will looking after the blog after I have stood under a hairdryer for 20 minutes or so to dry myself.

  • 09:34
    Eh, morto for your ma....


  • 09:41
    The Government has expressed its confidence in the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) and its chairman Simon O’Brien,

    “I have no beef with GSOC,” Minister for Justice Alan Shatter told the Dáil last night at the end of a debate on the controversy over alleged surveillance at the organisation’s headquarters in Dublin.

    Mr Shatter said Mr O’Brien’s failure to report to him on the security checks at the GSOC was “a matter of substantial concern to me” but he went on to express his backing for the commission and its work.

    The GSOC commissioner Kieran Fitzgerald has said the watchdog “cannot definitively say we were bugged”. However, its advice was that the possibility of there being a benign explanation for some anomalies found during the sweep of its offices was “remote to zero”.



  • 09:42

    What's happening to the weather?

    Bad things.  

     

  • 09:46
  • 09:48

    Bitcoin is in a bit of bother.

    It is being hit by attacks from unknown hackers who are sending “mutated” lines of code into the program that runs the virtual currency.


    The attacks are responsible for problems experienced by two bitcoin exchanges that caused them to temporarily halt withdrawals by customers who stored bitcoins in digital wallets provided by the exchanges, the Bitcoin Foundation said in a statement yesterday.


    “This is a denial-of-service attack,” said the spokeswoman, Jinyoung Lee Englund. “Whoever is doing this is not stealing coins, but is succeeding in preventing some transactions from confirming. It’s important to note that DoS attacks do not affect people’s bitcoin wallets or funds.”



  • 10:10

    The Salvadoran man who apparently spent 13 months adrift in the Pacific Ocean before washing ashore in the Marshall Islands has returned home to El Salvador. Jose Salvador Alvarenga (37) arrived at the airport near San Salvador last night, flew by jet across the ocean he said he had traversed in a broken-down 24ft fishing boat.

    Its engine had failed in a December 2012 storm while he and a companion were fishing for sharks off the coast of Mexico. His boatmate, Ezequiel Cordoba was not able to eat raw fish and animals and died about a month into their ordeal, Alvarenga told Marshall Islands authorities.


    His tale has been been met with som scepticism, it is fair to say, but no other explanation for his having turned up in the Marshall Islands has been found.  

  • 10:21

    The Stripe Boys are doing well. They are now working in 139 currencies across the world. The company which was set up by Limerick children younger than Dougie Hauser MD is now valued at €1.5bn and is likely to be worth a whole lot more by the end of the year.  



  • 10:30

    Micheal O'Regan was just on the Sean O'Rourke show talking about phones being bugged.  

    Then the phoneline went dead and he was cut off.  

    Suspicious?

    Who can say? Who can say?

     

  • 10:34

    This just in from Joan Scales: "Get ready to see the world’s most beautiful inflight safety video today when Air New Zealand releases Safety in Paradise in conjunction with Sports Illustrated Swimsuit which celebrates 50 years of the iconic publication this year. Made in the Cook Islands the video will features some of the world’s biggest names in modelling including Chrissy Teigen, Ariel Meredith, Hannah Davis and Jessica Gomes. There will also be a special appearance by Chrissie Brinkley the original Uptown Girl."

     



  • 10:38

    The Garda Ombudsman will appear before an Oireachtas committee this afternoon to shed light on its decision to seek a security sweep of its Dublin office last year.

    At issue for some members of the Committee of Public Service Oversight and Petitions is the question what led the Ombudsman to bring in external consultants to carry out the sweep.


    The hearing being at 4pm in Leinster House.

  • 10:42

    “We’re bringing the Trump factor to Ireland, ” Donald Trump snr said last night, announcing his firm’s “major investment” in the golf resort at Doonbeg, Co Clare.

    Sigh  



  • 10:59

    First there was this from the Sheffield Star

     

     


     


    And then there was this:  

     

     


     


    Spot the difference?

  • 11:23
  • 11:26

    This is worth watching to the very end...

     

    Please do.  

     


  • 11:29

    Lorcan McCluskey, a former Associate Director of Lending at Anglo Irish Bank has continued his evidence at the trial of the trial of Sean FitzPatrick, William McAteer and Pat Whelan  this morning.

    He identified a letter presented to him by the prosecution. It is a typed loan facility letter dated July 10, 2008 with handwritten notes made in several places.

     


    Mr McCluskey said the notes are in the handwriting of himself, Pat Whelan and Michael O’Sullivan.


    One note states: “To replace letter dated 10/7/2008.”


    This note is crossed out but legible. Mr McCluskey said he believes it is Mr Whelan’s writing.


    Another of the notes states: “Ten heroes Rec SAT 11/10/08.”


    The witness said this note was also in Mr Whelan’s handwriting. A further note changes the loan amount to the borrower from €60 million to €45 million.


    Mr McCluskey said he believes he first saw this letter on October 13, 2008. He has previously said he refused to sign this updated letter because it would weaken the bank’s position.


    He also said he kept a copy of the letter at the time as evidence that its contents had not been drafted by him or his line manager, Mr O’Sullivan.


    Under cross-examination, Mr McCluskey denied his account of events “has evolved over time.”


    Counsel for Mr Whelan, Brendan Grehan SC, put it to him that up until now he never said he refused to sign the letter, that the furthest he went was to say he was uncomfortable with its contents.


    Mr McCluskey repeated that he refused to sign it.

  • 12:07

    All 24 Superquinn stores will become SuperValus tomorrow. The expanded SuperValu network will be made up of 223 stores with a turnover of €2.6 billion, employing 14,500 employees and handling 2.6 million transactions a week.   One in four Irish consumers will shop in SuperValu stores this year.  

  • 12:10


  • 12:12

    Unconfirmed tweet so all the ususal health warnings apply.  


     


     



  • 12:27


  • 12:31


    Hugh Linehan has just pointed out that this headline on our site now: ‘Vicious’ storm hits south and moves across country' is a pathetic fallacy.

     

    You can take the man out of the Inter Cert English class....

  • 12:38

    Is it lunchtime? Not yet? Okay, let's get this out of the way. The Labour Court has ordered a Dublin firm to pay €20,000 to a former employee suffering from post traumatic stress due to the presence of rats and mice at her workplace.

    The Labour Court found that Amanda Byrne was victimised and suffered harassment and a discriminatory dismissal at the hands of her employers, Sea and Shore Safety Services Ltd in a dispute that stemmed from the firm’s failure to deal adequately with a rodent problem at its Carrickmines premises.

    Work at an adjoining property resulted in a rodent problem at the marine safety training firm’s property on the Glenamuck Rd in Carrickmines in 2008 and the problem re-emerged in 2010.

    Ms Byrne had a long term phobia about rodents and first reported a mouse running along her office desk in June 2008.  Ms Byrne also reported seeing rats at an increasing rate around the property and on one occasion nearly stepped on a large rat outside her office in July 2010.


    Ms Byrne told the court that she was terrified to walk from her car to the office after seeing a rat walk across the car park. On another occasion she saw a rat run down the hall into the office area.

  • 14:03
  • 14:04

    Manchester United has provided some cheer (for its fans) in an otherwise gloomy season with an 11.6 per cent jump in second quarter revenues, helped by rising commercial and broadcasting sales.

     

    It's all about the money money money

     

     

  • 14:06


  • 14:53


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  • 14:56

    Near hurricane-force winds have now left almost 100,000 homes and businesses along the south and west of the country, after the latest Atlantic storm swept in Among the worst-affected areas are Cork, Kerry and Clare. The ESB has said the number without power is expected to worsen as the storm sweeps across the country with gusts of up to 160km/h.

  • 14:56


  • 14:59


  • 14:59


  • 15:03

    Irish Rail has saud its services have been badly hit with customers on all routes in Cork and Kerry warned to expect disruption and significant delays. It has blamed fallen trees and debris on lines including the routes from Mallow to Cork and Tralee and Cork to Cobh/Midleton.


    “Due to fallen trees on roads, it is currently not possible to provide bus transfers between Mallow and Cork, and between Mallow and Tralee,” Irish Rail said.  “Line maintenance crews are working to clear train lines, to ensure customers are brought to their destinations at the earliest opportunity. However significant delays can be expected.”

  • 15:06


  • 15:07
    Cork, Kerry, Clare, Limerick all taking a ferocious battering right now.  No-one should be outside unless it is absolutely necessary.  
  • 15:08


  • 15:10


  • 15:23
    The Garda are warning that trees down at locations around kilkenny City with many diversions in place. People have been warned to avoid nnecessary journeys. Gardai have also appealed to truck drivers to exercise care as strong winds have caused a number of issues around the country.

     

  • 15:24
    We are hearing reports that the worst of the storm has passed over parts of the south coast. The east to be hit starting at around 4pm.  
  • 15:28
    This footage of the roof being blown of the Limerick Boat Club is very dramatic. And terrifying.
  • 15:31
    A 16km tailback is being reported on the N20 Cork Limerick Road into Mallow.  
  • 15:52
    The Met Eireann radar at Shannon Airport has been blown away - or at least badly damaged.  It is currently offline. The weather people have said that repairs will be made as oon as possible.  
  • 15:53


  • 15:54
    Around 500 homes in the Carraroe and Leitir Mór areas of Connemara are without power now.  ESB Networks estimate service will be restored at 5.15pm
  • 15:55
    We are hearing reports that students at a New Ross school have been told not to stay in thei building after the roof of a nearby swimming pool blew off.
  • 15:58
    Local radio in Kilkenny reporting that a major emergency has now been declared.  All fire  and  emergency services have been deployed
  • 16:11
    Met Eireann has just issued a Status Red warning for Leinster, Munster and Connacht this evening. It is prediciting damaging and dangerous winds. Squally showers also & thunderstorms.
  • 16:16


  • 16:22
    Irish Rail spokesman Barry Kenny has told The Irish Times that the signalling system at Cherryville has been damaged by winds. All trains to and from Heuston have been suspended.
  • 16:25
    We are also getting reports that the Westside library in Rahoon in Galway had to be evacuated after windows blew in.  
  • 16:30


  • 16:32

    DART services suspended between Dalkey and Greystones due to damage to overhead power lines

    Line remains closed south of Limerick Junction No services leaving Heuston for Kerry, Cork and Limerick Until Further notice  

    Services suspended through Carlow at Present due to fallen trees

    Line remains closed between Limerick and Athenry

    Iarnród Éireann advises that essential journeys only to be made as major delays are expected.

    Iarnród Éireann has advised rail customers travelling between Heuston and Cork/Kerry and Limerick to expect severe disruption to services this evening due to damage caused by falling trees and debris. There are currently no services operating south of Limerick Junction and no services for Cork, Kerry or Limerick are leaving Heuston at present. Portlaoise and Kildare Commuter services and services to the west of Ireland are operating but may be subject to delays.  

    There are currently no services operating through Carlow due to fallen trees.  

    DART services are suspended between Dalkey and Greystones due to storm damage caused to the overhead power  

     

    There are no services operating between Limerick and Athenry due to adverse weather. Limited service is operating between Athenry and Galway.

     

    Alternative services are being provided between Cork and Cobh / Midleton, but with limited capacity, and customers can expect delays.

     

    Services into and out of Connolly including DART, Commuter and Intericity Services are operating this evening, but may be subject to minor delays.

  • 16:34


  • 16:37


  • 16:37


  • 16:38
    Dublin Airport Authority warning that high winds may impact services to and from Dublin over the next couple of hours.  
  • 16:39
    The N25 Cork/ Waterford road is currently blocked between Kilmeadan and Carroll's Cross due to a large fallen tree.
  • 16:40


  • 16:43


  • 16:46

    It's a miracle no-one died in this incident...

     

     


  • 16:52

    Limerick appears to have suffered most at the hands of the storm so far.  

    The near hurricane force winds damaged a large number of buildings in the city. Part of a building on Sarsfield St collapsed leading to the closure of the street and the roof of the Limerick Rowing Club boat house was ripped off.

    A Supervalu outlet in Castletroy was damaged while students at the University of Limerick were advised to remain within the college buildings due to the severity of the winds.

    The worst has passed now - at least on that side of the country. The east is getting a battering now.  




  • 16:54
    This video gives some idea of the scale of the damage in Limerick.
  • 16:58

    Dozens of roads are blocked and public transport has been severely disrupted by the storm sweeping the country.

    A signalling system fault has been restored at Cherryville (south of Kildare)  but no trains from Heuston Station to Cork, Kerry or Limerick are moving.


    The Waterford trains is expected to run but with delays.

    Dalkey to Greystones services on the DART suspended.

    Passengers on the 11am from Cork to Dublin not yet reached their destination.

    A jack-knifed lorry has cause a 16km tailback on the N20, the main road between Cork and Limerick, into Mallow from Buttevant.

    The AA’s Conor Faughnan said the disruption in Munster area was the worst he has ever seen.

    The main artery to the south, the M8, is closed both ways at J15 Fermoy South as emergency services deal with an overturned truck. Diversions are in place.

    The M8 is also closed both ways at J9 Cashel South because of two overturned trucks either side of the motorway.

    Trees have been cleared on the N71 Skibbereen/ Cork Rd just before Rosscarbery. Fallen trees still in place further east between Bandon and Ballinhassig and on towards Cork City.

    The South City Link Rd is blocked between the Kinsale Rd roundabout and the city centre due to fallen trees.

    A fallen tree is partially blocking the Grange Rd heading towards the Kinsale Rd R/A from the Frankfield area.

    One lane of the M9 Waterford/ Dublin Rd is blocked northbound between J9 Kilkenny South and J8 Kilkenny due to a fallen tree.

    Cork Airport and Shannon are both closed until further notice.

    Bus Eireann has cancelled all Limerick City Services. Expressway services are also cancelled.

    All Irish Ferries Dublin Swift sailings have been cancelled until further notice.

    Stena Line has suspected all crossings on the Irish Sea until at least tomorrow evening.

  • 17:02
    The number of homes across the State without power is now reported to have topped 200,000.  
  • 17:06


  • 17:10
    The hurricane-force winds have now left more than 260,000 homes and businesses without power.  
  • 17:11
    The N11 Dublin to Wexford Rd is impassable both ways between Kilcroney  and  Newcastle because a large number of trees  and electrical cables have come down.
  • 17:15

    From the Garda Press Office:


     


     


    The local coordination group have met in County Hall, Superintendent Padraig Dunne, District Office Kilkenny, Mr Joe Crockett County Manager Kilkenny and Mr John Collins Senior Assistant Fire Officer.  



    The coordination group have strategically assessed the situation and have identified a priority list of roads to be cleared. These roads are currently closed due to fallen trees and power lines.   Priority at this stage is re-opening routes to the Hospital.



    Gardaí are currently escorting heavy cutting machinery in order to deal with a number of fallen trees in the county. Priority for today will be the removal of trees from roadways to enable traffic to pass.   At this stage we have no reports of serious injuries.



    Met Eireann have a Red Alert weather warning for Kilkenny, it is expected that the strong winds will persist for at least another two hours.



    The coordination group wish to make the following appeal to the public:



    Avoid unnecessary travel


    Stay indoors if possible


    Motorists travelling home should reduce speed as debris may be scattered along their route.


    Press Office


    The County Manager for Kilkenny has invoked the Major Emergency Plan for Kilkenny City & County at 3.20pm this evening, 12th February 2014, due to storm weather across the county.  
     


    Superintendent Pascal Connolly, Regional Traffic Superintendent, and District Officers Kilkenny & Thomastown Districts with County Manager, Local Authority and HSE Official are attending an emergency meeting this afternoon in Kilkenny City Hall.    
     


    There have been no specific reports received of any persons injured etc. at this time due to weather conditions.  
     


    Gardaí are appealing to the public in Kilkenny to stay indoors and to avoid unnecessary travel where possible. The Emergency Services are currently dealing with in excess of 24 incidents in Kilkenny City.   These involve fallen trees and fallen power lines.
     


    The following roads are currently impassable:
     


    College Road


    Castle Road


    Dublin Road (near McDonagh Junction)


    Green Street


    Freshford Road  

  • 17:18


  • 17:22


  • 17:23


  • 17:25

    Statement just in from the the National Coordination Group on Severe Weather.

    It "will meet again this evening to review the rapidly changing severe weather situation. Several counties have already been badly hit by the storm as it moves across the country. Met Eireann has now issued a Status Red warning for Leinster, Munster & Connacht this evening with damaging and dangerous winds, squally showers also & thunderstorms. All road users and pedestrians are being advised to exercise extreme caution this evening due to the dangerous conditions that may prevail. The peak intensity of storm winds will be from now through to 19:00 this evening."

  • 17:31


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  • 17:58
    Apparently as some winds have now exceeded 120kmh Storm Darwin  has become a Level 1 hurricane.  
  • 18:12
    From the Garda Press Office

    • ESB cable down on Rathgar Avenue
    • Tree down blocking rd on Lwr Dodder Rd Orwell Rd end Rathgar
    • Ballinclea Rd Tree fallen onto Rd
    • Tree down at Kevin St/ Patrick St.
    • Several Trees have fallen down on Shelerin Rd Clonsill D15
    • Trees down on the Moyne Rd Baldonnel between Fingal Cemetery and Champions Public House.
    • Tree down on the Coast Rd also wire down.
    • Annavill Rd Closed due to falling slates
    • Tree down at Jct of Rathbeale Rd and Ballyboughal Rd
    • Clonshaugh Rd closed for the night.
  • 18:27

    Frank McDonald is stuck on a train.  

    This is his report.  

    "I'm on the 14.50 train from Waterford to Dublin. We were stuck at Waterford station because of a fallen tree on the line between W'ford and Thomastown and then had to stop more than once for another fallen tree to be chainsawed before we could proceed. We haven't even reached Kilkenny yet, more than 3 hours later!"  

  • 18:33




  • 18:47


  • 18:59
  • 19:15

    Limerick city and county councils are co-ordinating a response to “hundreds of incidents” from the severe weather and have enacted a major emergency co-ordination structure with the HSE and the Garda, due to the winds.


    In a statement in the last while Paul Crowe, Director of Services, Limerick City and County Council said: “We are advising the public to avoid making any unnecessary journeys as the strong winds are expected to continue into the night-time hours. Motorists are also advised that most roads throughout the City and County are affected by fallen trees and other debris”


    Members of the public wishing to report storm damage of an emergency nature are advised to ring the emergency services on 999.


    It's Genevieve Carbery here taking you through the weather developments for the next few hours.  

  • 19:37
    Some roads starting to reopen. In Wicklow the  N11 Dublin/Wexford Rd between Newtownmountkennedy and Glenview has reopened in both directions.  In Kilkenny the M9 Waterford/ Dublin Rd has reopened, according to AA Roadwatch.  
  • 19:40

    The major emergency in Kilkenny has been stood down, according to a press release in from gardai.


    “All inter urban routes to and from Kilkenny city are now open however caution is still advise. Many local roads remain blocked and will be dealt with as soon as possible”.



    Gardai remind landowners that a large number of trees adjacent to roads are still in a “dangerous condition” having been weakened by the storm. The gardai are reminding motorists of debris on the roads. It also says fallen trees may pose additional danger because they are entangled in live cables.



    The area around Nowlan park remains closed to traffic and pedestrians.

  • 19:58

    As the storm moves there are many reports from Co Meath of road closures.

    AA Roadwatch reports trees down near Kilmoon Cross. outside Dunshaughlin /Navan Rd (R147), the Boyne Rd leaving Navan, t he N51 Athboy /Delvin Rd, the N2 Ashbourne /Slane Rd and on  the Nobber /Kingscourt Rd (R162) .

    It reports Co Meath Road closures at: Mill Rd in Mornington, N52 Delvin /Kells Rd ., Summerhill /Dunboyne Rd (R156).

  • 20:05
  • 20:16
    This just in from gardai: Residents of the Waterway Apartments, Ashtown, Dublin, are being evacuated due to structural damage to the property, due to storm damage.The Ashtown road is closed to traffic and road users are requested to use River road as an alternative.  
  • 20:21

    The National Coordination Group has just sent in a statement which says the storm is expected to clear the east coast later this evening. The meeting was attended by Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar.

    It says the group has been building up a picture of the storm:: “The storm has had major impact on transport, electricity and communication infrastructure and buildings, disrupting travel and communities. Rail services were disrupted and airports were closed for a period. Roads and traffic were disrupted by overturned lorries in a number of cases.”


    “Met Eireann had issued a Status Red severe weather warning for Cork and Kerry initially but this was extended to Leinster, Munster & Connacht as damaging and dangerous winds travelled up across the country from the south-west. The storm is expected to clear the east coast later this evening.”



    “Many buildings were damaged and in Killarney the 52 occupants of a nursing home were evacuated after its roof was damaged. In Kilkenny a major emergency was declared as the number of calls for assistance overwhelmed the response capacity.”



    The ESB has reported that power supply have been impacted to in excess of 200,000 properties.

  • 20:23

    The National Coordination Group says ESB crews will be working through the night to restore as many lines as possible, because of the scale of damage it may take some time to restore supply to all customers. It urges people to check on vulnerable neighbours.
    It says local authorities are clearing local trees but this may take some time.

  • 20:24

    For morning commuters the National Coordination Group warns of ice with danger to motorists from debris. Commuters should allow extra time for travel and use public transport where available , it says.

    For those without power tonight it urges them to be mindful using candles and open heating sources at home.

  • 20:36
  • 20:48

    ESB Networks says it has a “mammoth” task ahead tonight as 215,000 customers remain without power and with 4,000 network faults identified.


    From 5pm this evening supply was restored to 45,000 customers, it says in an update released in the last few minutes.


    “Networks crews will work into the night and hope to get power back to another 15,000 homes and businesses,” it says.


    Additional crews have been drafted in to the areas in the southwest. ESB says it is prioritising making safe damaged equipment.


    Among the areas affected are Waterford/Clonmel (20,000 customers), Tralee (26,000), Enniscorthy (19,000), Bandon (16,000), Portlaoise/Kilkenny (13,000), Enniscorthy (19,000), Killarney (11,000) and Dinmanway (15,000).

  • 21:09
    Update:  Residents at a Dublin apartment block have been advised to stay indoors. Originally residents at the Waterways Apartment Block in Ashtown were going to be evacuated due to storm structural damage. However now residents in the penthouse have been asked to leave. The ESB assessed the situation and are no longer at the scene. A site engineer will asses the damage when the weather improves.  
  • 21:15
  • 21:29
  • 21:29
  • 21:30
    For those almost 200,000 without power gardai are urging you to be neighbourly.  
  • 21:42
    So while the severe winds will continue to abate, another deep depression / storm is expected to track towards us for the early part of the weekend, according to Met Eireann.  
  • 22:10
    Thanks for reading, stay safe.