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Flooding crisis in Donegal averted after Storm Barra

Fire services pumping water in Donegal town earlier tonight
Fire services pumping water in Donegal town earlier tonight

Thousands remain without electricity across the country and parts of Donegal town were flooded after the River Eske burst its banks following heavy rain during Storm Barra.

A potential flooding crisis was averted when the fire service managed to pump water away from endangered areas of the town. Emergency crews have now been stood down.

Donegal County Council is "confident" the situation is now under control.

Met Éireann said that Storm Barra has "now cleared Ireland with winds continuing to ease across the country.

"It will be a much quieter night tonight with light winds and some clear spells."

Head of Forecasting at Met Éireann, Evelyn Cusack, said that the weather outlook from tomorrow onwards is much improved, although it will be cold and windy.

A spokesperson for the ESB Networks revealed around 13,000 customers are still without power following Storm Barra.

The company said crews are continuing to restore power to as many customers as possible tonight.

However, it admitted many will be without power overnight. Counties along the Western and Northwestern Seaboard are most affected.

Irish Water said the majority of customers who lost supply had it restored this morning and it is expected that most of those still without water will see supply "returning this evening and overnight".

Tom Cuddy, Irish Water's Head of Operations, said: "Crews have been working 24/7 around the country to make the necessary repairs and we are making good progress in restoring supplies.

"Alternative power supplies and generators have been deployed in some locations to get plants back into production while we are also liaising closely with the ESB to prioritise the restoration of power to plants affected by electricity outages."

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The Chair of the National Emergency Co-ordination Group, Keith Leonard, said last night was a busy one for emergency services with many fallen trees and debris on the roads.

He said the decision to close schools in counties under Red and Orange warnings was based on the potential for storm damage to school buildings and fallen power lines and a full assessment will be taken today.

People are urged not to approach fallen electricity lines and if they come across them to treat them as live and contact the ESB Emergency number on 1800 372 999.

The closed gates of Howth primary school in Dublin today (pic:

The health service resumed most services this morning, but some Covid-19 vaccine and testing centres remained closed in Sligo, Carrick-on-Shannon and Letterkenny.

HSE Chief Operations Officer Anne O'Connor said yesterday's widespread cancellations impacted mostly on Cork and Kerry and some western areas, with a lot of a scheduled outpatient appointments cancelled.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, she said everyone who had appointments cancelled will be contacted with a new appointment, including those who had Covid-19 tests cancelled.

Meanwhile, flights are operating as normal at Dublin Airport, while at Cork Airport, many flights have departed ahead of schedule.

However, the 6am Cork to Amsterdam flight was cancelled because the aircraft was unable to arrive into the airport last night due to Storm Barra.

A spokesperson for the daa has said Ryanair is laying on extra flights from Cork airport today to accommodate passengers who were affected by yesterday's flight cancellations.

Yesterday, a wind gust of 159km/h was recorded at Fastnet Lighthouse off the south coast, while another gust of 113km/h was recorded on Sherkin Island, located just off Cork's coast.

Weather information and a full 7-day forecast