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Updates as Storm Arwen sweeps across NI

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A weather warning has been issued for Northern Ireland

A weather warning has been issued for Northern Ireland

A weather warning has been issued for Northern Ireland

High winds and gusts of up to 65mph are expected to hit Northern Ireland as Storm Arwen sweeps in.

The Met Office has in place a yellow weather warning from 9am on Friday until midnight.

Some travel disruption and damage is expected on Friday afternoon and into the evening as the storm makes its way southwards from Scotland.

Gusts will reach 55 to 65 mph in many coastal areas and the yellow weather warning means that “injuries and danger to life from flying debris are possible”.

It was reported earlier this week that severe gales will hit the north coasts of Co Antrim and Co Londonderry in particular as temperatures are set to plummet.

Snow is also expected to hit high points on the Sperrins and Mourne mountains.

Some damage to trees, temporary structures and buildings, such as tiles blown from roofs, could happen and road, rail, air and ferry services may be affected, with longer journey times and cancellations possible due to the high winds.

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Power cuts may occur, with the potential to affect other services, such as mobile phone coverage.

Injuries and danger to life could also occur from large waves and beach material being thrown onto sea fronts, coastal roads and properties.

The RNLI is also urging anyone thinking of taking to the seas over the coming days to be particularly vigilant.

They said high winds and large seas are anticipated on Friday and Saturday and said people should take “extreme caution”  if visiting the shoreline, especially along exposed cliffs, seafronts and piers.

Kevin Rahill, RNLI Water Safety Lead said: ‘Storm Arwen could make visiting our coasts treacherous and bring very dangerous sea conditions. The RNLI would advise people to stay out of the water during these stormy conditions.

"Swimming in large waves and rough seas can be dangerous where currents can drag someone away from the shore and in addition to that, the rough weather can make it difficult to spot someone in the water should they get into difficulty. Large waves can also make exiting the water difficult and increase the risk of injury.

"While stormy conditions may be tempting to watch, it is important to remember the sea is very dangerous and unpredictable and big waves can easily knock you off your feet.

"We would urge people to stay well back from the edge to avoid being swept in by large waves crashing over rocks and piers. As well as the risk of being swept into the sea, large waves can often undermine cliff edges and make them unstable.

"If you think someone is in danger, please dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.”


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