MET Eireann has extended its status red weather warning to the entire country, following heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures overnight.
Forecasters predict blizzard conditions (including gale force winds and further snowfall) will spread beyond Leinster and Munster to the west and the north. The entire population has been advised to stay indoors from 4pm today until 3pm tomorrow. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar urges people to take this warning seriously, adding that the blizzard conditions pose a serious threat to life.
Drivers are being asked to stay off the roads unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Bus Eireann and Dublin Bus services have been suspended until Saturday, while Irish Rail services will be suspended from 2pm today.
Luas services are operating on a half hour basis on both lines until noon, after which all trams will be suspended until further notice.
Cork airport was forced to close overnight following temperatures of -7 Celsius and compacted snow on the runway. They hope to reopen by 10am, but many flights have been cancelled. Passengers are being urged to check with their airline before making their way to the airport.
Elsewhere, teams in Dublin Airport are working hard to keep runways clear. They tweeted, “We’ve had a number of aircraft landing & departing this morning,” but there have been a number of cancellations and again, passengers are asked to check with their airline before arriving at the terminal.
Power outages have already been reported in various parts of the country, including Portmarnock and Malahide. Dublin Fire Brigade shared the following checklist to help anyone experiencing power cuts.
– Torches (and spare batteries)
– Candles (LED if possible)
– Bottled water
– Working smoke alarm
– Charged mobile phone(s)
– Alternative methods of heat
– ESB phone number: 1850 372 999
– Visit powercheck.ie