Ireland braces for arrival of Storm Eunice

Schools in nine counties in the Republic of Ireland will remain closed on Friday due to the impact of the storm.

The full moon known as the ‘snow moon’ rises above Howth lighthouse in Dublin (Brian Lawless/PA)
The full moon known as the ‘snow moon’ rises above Howth lighthouse in Dublin (Brian Lawless/PA)

Ireland is braced for the arrival of Storm Eunice, which is forecast to hit the country in the early hours of Friday morning.

Schools and colleges across the Republic of Ireland will remain closed on Friday as officials warned of a “high-impact, multi-hazard weather event”.

In nine counties, schools will remain closed after Met Eireann issued a red wind warning for Cork, Kerry, Clare and Waterford.

An orange snow warning has also been issued for several counties in the north and west, including Donegal, Mayo, Sligo, Leitrim and Roscommon.

The storm is expected to be powerful but relatively short, hitting the country overnight.

However, officials have warned that the country will likely awake on Friday morning to damage and disruption, including fallen trees, power outages and coastal flooding.

Gardai have urged the public to heed warnings for their local areas.

A woman walks past a mural of a red umbrella in Dublin as schools and colleges in nine counties in the Republic of Ireland are closed on Friday (Brian Lawless/PA)

Those living in the worst-affected areas have been advised to remain indoors for the duration of the storm and to remain cautious even when the worst conditions have abated.

Bus Eireann will not operate during the red warning while Irish Rail will operate provided there is no damage to tracks.

Ireland’s National Emergency Co-ordination Group met on Thursday to finalise planning, with chairman Keith Leonard predicting a “high-impact, multi-hazard weather event”.

Tommy Ryan, from the County and City Management Association, said on Thursday night that crews are on standby, as well as Civil Defence if necessary.

“Each local authority is scaling the response at an appropriate level depending on the level of warning, whether it is red, orange or yellow,” he said.

“The local government sector is prepared and ready to respond.”

The Met Eireann storm warning for Kerry, Cork and Clare comes into effect at 3am on Friday and will remain in place until 8am.

The alert for Waterford begins at 7am on Friday and will stay in place until 11am.

An orange wind warning has been issued for the Munster region and counties Carlow, Dublin, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Offaly, Wexford, Wicklow and Galway, from 3am to 11am.

An orange snow warning has been issued for Donegal, Leitrim, Sligo, Mayo and Roscommon, from 3am to 3pm.

A yellow wind, rain and snow warning covers the rest of the country from the early hours of Friday to 3pm.

In Northern Ireland, a yellow wind and snow warning has been issued by the Met Office for 3am to 6pm on Friday.

“Storm Eunice may cause disruption due to heavy snow and some strong winds on Friday,” said the UK forecaster.

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