Storms batter Irish coastline

Storm force winds of up to 80mph were today battering the Irish coastline.

Met Éireann has issued a weather warning as south-westerly winds reach strong gale to storm force today on all coasts of Ireland and on the Irish Sea.

Winds are expected to reach violent storm force at times.

The west of Ireland, including Galway city and county, has already experienced a violent thunderstorm and storm force winds, with high waves, hailstones and torrential rain flooding in low-lying areas.

Sea crossings have been affected by the violent winds, with all Stena Line and Irish Ferries sailings cancelled.

Motorists are warned to be aware of debris on the roads.

Joanna Donnelly, forecaster with Met Éireann, said gusts of 78mph have already been recorded with higher winds expected within the next few hours.

"Winds are currently reaching their peak," she said. "But towards nightfall and in to tonight it will ease off."

Tonight will be cold and windy, with clear spells and scattered heavy showers, some with hail and possibly thundery.

Tomorrow will be cold and windy, with sunny spells and showers. Some of the showers will be heavy and possibly thundery, with sleet or snow possible over high ground.

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