Coast Guard warns public: Stay away from shorelines

A scene at Howth earlier this week

The Coast Guard has warned the public to stay away from exposed coastal areas this evening, with gust of up to 120km/h predicted.

Met Éireann has issued an orange weather warning for counties Wexford, Galway, Mayo, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and Waterford.

Winds will strengthen again tonight with gale force south to southwest winds developing, giving gusts of 100-120km/h, highest in the exposed coastal areas.

Irish Ferries is advising passengers that due to weather conditions, Swift sailings are cancelled for tomorrow. Passengers will be accommodated on other sailings.

The danger of coastal flood continues, due to the combination of the gale force winds, high tides and very high seas. Heavy thundery downpours may lead to local spot flooding inland also.

The Coast Guard strongly advises the public not to go out on exposed coasts, cliffs, piers, harbour walls, beaches, promenades or any other coastal areas during the stormy weather.

"Huge waves can be whipped up by high seas. These waves can pose hazards to anyone close to the shoreline," read a Coast Guard statement.

Manager of the Irish Coast Guard, Declan Geoghegan said: "The public should exercise extreme caution and venture out only where necessary, also don’t go out alone, and have a method of raising the alarm if necessary.”

He also urged the public to monitor weather broadcasts when travelling and heed the advice of the RSA on road use during severe weather and high winds.

Specific advice from the Coast Guard is:

* The public is advised to stay away from the shoreline and to avoid engaging in water sports

* Do not venture out unnecessarily when gale force conditions are forecast

* Avoid exposed coasts, cliff paths and coastal areas during inclement weather this week

* Owners of small vessels and fishing vessels in coastal waters should seek shelter and secure them properly with moorings.

If you do see someone in difficulty in the sea, on the shore, cliffs, lakes or rivers, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.

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