Storm Barra arrives, bringing rain, 70mph winds, and threat of disruption
Disruptive winds, heavy rain and snow showers have hit Ireland with the arrival of Storm Barra.
After making landfall this morning, Storm Barra has caused flooding in southern areas, particularly in parts of Co Cork.
Up to 35,000 homes and businesses are without power as gusts of more than 130km an hour are expected to hit parts of the country.
Schools, colleges and creches in some of the worst affected areas were shut amid warnings that no part of the island will escape the effects of the storm.
Covid-19 test and vaccination centres will also remain closed in some parts of the Republic.
A UK Met Office yellow warning for Northern Ireland will remain in place from 6am on Tuesday until 9am on Wednesday.
Four recycling centres have closed for "health and safety reasons" over fears of flying debris. Centres in Strahans Road, Donemana, Newtownstewart and Plumbridge are closed until further notice.
- Fallen trees have closed lanes and roads on Middle Braniel Road in Belfast and Millisle Road beside the old police station in Donaghadee.
- Warnocks Road, Portavogie is currently closed due to a fallen electricity pole.
- The A2 Belfast Road between Jordanstown & Whiteabbey has reopened.
- The Granville Road, Dungannon, which was affected by flooding earlier this afternoon, is now clear.
- The Trooperslane Road in Carrickfergus has since reopened following an earlier blockage with a tree.
Met Éireann put in place a status red warning for counties Clare, Cork and Kerry, which means the storm could pose a “threat to life”.
Evelyn Cusack, head of forecasting at Met Eireann, urged the public to keep safe.
“I want to say to everybody to follow all the warnings of all the local authorities and emergency services’ advice and don’t go out and do anything stupid,” Ms Cusack said.
“The threat of flooding for Cork has now receded, there is flooding there but the high tide is on.
“The threat of flooding has now shifted to the east coast, particularly Dundalk and Drogheda, with the high tide just after 1pm.
“Very poor conditions at different times in different areas, right through the day and tonight as well.
“So everybody, keep safe.”
Business owners in Bantry, Co Cork, fought to keep flood water from entering properties while members of the fire brigade pumped away water.
Met Éireann has warned that disruption to travel and the power supply are likely, along with coastal flooding.
Gardaí have urged anyone living in areas affected by red or orange warnings to avoid unnecessary travel.
Cork, Kerry and Clare have been given the red warning while an orange-level warning is in place for much of the east and west coast.
A yellow warning is in place for the rest of the country from 2am on Tuesday until 6pm on Wednesday.
Met Éireann said there is a strong possibility that the alert status of some counties could move from orange to red.
The Defence Forces are also on standby to help emergency services, alongside members of Civil Defence.
The Irish Coast Guard has urged the public to avoid any activities that could expose them to “unnecessary danger”.