Extremely cold weather conditions caused major disruption to travel today, with roads around the country badly hit and flights into and out of Dublin Airport interrupted.

Some flights from Barcelona, Berlin and Malaga were diverted from Dublin to Belfast International Airport.

Flights at Dublin Airport resumed at 6.40pm, but operations were being reviewed on an ongoing basis.

All air passengers should consult their airline's website before making their way to the airports.

Counties across Leinster wre again badly affected by the snowfalls.

Warnings were issued to motorists and pedestrians to take care.

Motorists have been advised to take extreme care, particularly on back roads that have not been gritted.

Hospitals have reported a significant increase in the number of patients being admitted with fractures or sprains.

Many schools and colleges closed and sporting events have been postponed.

Bus and rail services are operating, with delays.

Dublin Bus service ended at 9pm, while all Luas services were cancelled early this evening until at least 5.30am tomorrow.

In Kildare, up to 50 personnel with the Defence Forces were deployed to assist with the clearing of snow and ice from roads in Leixlip.

ESB crews have been working throughout the day to restore power to customers in Castlebar in Co Mayo and in Ennis in Co Clare.

Eircom said that around 4,200 customers are still without telephone and broadband services which were knocked out by lightning storms.

A gradual thaw is expected by next week.

The Minister for the Environment said an additional €15m will be made available to local authorities whose finances have been stretched as a result of dealing with the cold weather.

John Gormley told the Dáil that the resources will be secured from his Department and be given to those authorities that are most in need.

He also said the Government is satisfied that the co-ordination of the response is in line with best international practice.