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Icy conditions continue but thaw expected later in week

IT WILL be “bitterly cold” tonight and the thaw will not be felt until tomorrow at the earliest, Met Éireann has warned.

Parts of the northeast, midlands and east Munster yesterday received further snowfalls, and in many areas it fell on compacted ice.

At Dublin airport Aer Lingus has cancelled today’s early-morning arrival from Boston. This follows the cancellation of flights between Dublin and the UK, France, Spain and Germany yesterday. Air France and Aer Arran also cancelled flights yesterday while a number of other airlines experienced delays.

Iarnród Eireann said all services were operating fully yesterday.

Dublin Bus said road conditions were still expected to be very icy across the city today and it will continue to monitor all routes with regular updates on its website, dublinbus.ie Bus Éireann said it will assess the situation early this morning and it too will have regular updates on its website, buseireann.ie

All users of public transport have been advised to contact their service providers before leaving home.

Up to 10,000 homes were without power yesterday evening in Donegal due to a “major fault” in the area. Weather conditions hampered crews as sleet and snow fell last night.

Eircom reported a fibre break on an underground cable between Listowel, Co Kerry and Foynes, Co Limerick. About 8,850 broadband customers and 750 telephone customers had their service restored by yesterday evening and the company said efforts to reconnect about 1,150 customers in Killorglin would continue.

The Government’s emergency taskforce will continue to co-ordinate efforts today as the ESB reconnects homes which were cut off during the cold spell.

Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey warned motorists to continue to be vigilant and confirmed Operation Freeflow, the annual deployment of extra gardaí on the streets of Dublin, had begun on December 1st. He also appealed to householders to check on their elderly neighbours during the ongoing cold spell.

Dublin City Council engineer Michael Phillips said the cost of having workers out on the streets clearing snow, as well as the extra costs for salt and gritting, were running close to €1 million.

Sean O’Neill of the National Roads Authority said salt was being transported around the country to areas of most need and while supplies were as low as 25,000 tonnes nationally, he anticipated they would be back up to 50,000 tonnes by Christmas.

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