Northern Ireland news

Third storm in a week arrives to batter Northern Ireland

In Co Tyrone, there was flooding on Lower Strabane Road outside Castlederg Fire Station as a result of Storm Eunice
Marie Louise McConville

Ireland was battered further yesterday by strong winds and heavy rain following the arrival of Storm Franklin - the third storm in a week.

An amber warning for wind in the north was issued early yesterday and was due to remain in place until early this morning.

The Met Office had forecast strong winds and heavy rain in the UK with the strongest winds due to be recorded in Northern Ireland.

It added that the wind could cause "travel delays, road and rail closures, power cuts and the potential risk to life and property."

Storm Franklin arrived two days after Storm Eunice brought fierce winds on Friday.

The storm saw trees fall and led to flying debris.

The arrival of snow saw reports of multiple road traffic collisions on the Glenshane Pass.

There were also a number of reports of localised flooding.

In Co Tyrone, there was flooding on Lower Strabane Road outside Castlederg Fire Station.

In Co Derry, motorists were advised that the Moyola River at Tobermore had burst its banks leading to flooding on the Clooney Road and Island Road, making them impassable.

There were also flooding in the Vaughan's Holm area of Newtownstewart.

The Urney Road, between Strabane and Clady, was also flooded.

Police also issued advice regarding "a lot of standing water" on the A1, asking motorists to slow down and allow extra for their journey.

Meterologist Becky Mitchen said three named storms in such quick succession was a first in seven years.

Speaking to PA, she said: "This is the first time we have had three named storms within a week, and we started the storm naming system in 2015.

"At the moment we've got a really active jet stream, which is why we're seeing so many storms.

"We had Dudley on Wednesday, Eunice on Friday and Franklin today".

Ms Mitchell said there will "definitely be some impact" from Storm Franklin but it is not expected to be "as severe" as Eunice because the strongest winds will be confined to the coast.

In the Republic, Billy Kinsella, a 59-year-old council worker, was killed by a falling tree on Friday, while out working to clear debris caused by Storm Eunice.

The incident happened in the Ballythomas area, close to the Wexford-Wicklow border.

It is understood he was working with a colleague clearing trees when the incident took place.

The storm also resulted in around 80,000 properties losing power in counties Cork, Kerry and Clare.

An orange warning for wind for counties Donegal, Sligo and Leitrim was in place yesterday.

At least 16 people were killed across Europe as a result of the extreme weather, with millions of homes and businesses experiencing power cuts.

Transport routes were also heavily impacted, with damage to rail networks and widespread cancellations of rail and ferry services.

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