Chaos across transport network during storm

Planes, trains and trams all cancelled due to high winds

High winds knocked down trees and tore down power cables close to the Beechwood station  in Ranelagh, Dublin 6. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien

High winds knocked down trees and tore down power cables close to the Beechwood station in Ranelagh, Dublin 6. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien

 

High winds caused chaos across the transport network on Wednesday, with planes, trains and trams cancelled throughout the afternoon.

More than 70 flights out of Dublin Airport were cancelled with at least 10 others forced to divert to other airports. Flights into Shannon were also diverted at the height of the storm.

A large portion of the Luas Green Line remains closed after gales knocked donw trees and tore down power cables close to the Beechwood station.

The problems were made significantly worse because electric cables become entangled in a tram and could not be simply reattached by maintenance crews.

A Luas spokeswoman said the incident had occurred between the Beechwood and Ranelagh stops and had affected 10 trams which were in the area at the time.

A curtailed service is running from Brides Glen to Balally heading north and from Broombridge to Dawson heading south. All Luas tickets will be valid on Dublin Bus until the problems have been resolved.

Luas maintenance crews first had to move the trams which were stuck on the lines in the area, before working on clearing trees which had fallen on the line.

It is only at that point that they would be in a position to work on the overhead power lines and assess the level of damage and the time needed to get the service back up and running.

The problem had been exacerbated by ongoing high winds, with gusts making it impossible to work safely on the overhead cables.

In a statement on Wednesday night, Luas operator Transdev said the Luas Green Line would not operate between Beechwood and Dawson on Thursday morning.

Approximately 75 flights have been cancelled into and out of Dublin Airport as a result of the high winds and 10 flights have been diverted to other airports.

Passengers have been advised to check with their airline in relation to specific flights while the airport has confirmed that passengers whose flights have been delayed will not been charged extra in parking fees.

Irish Rail has said the Connolly to Belfast service which was scheduled to depart at 3.20pm was cancelling due to the line closure as a result of debris on the line.

Earlier in the day, people using the Sligo line could expect delays of up to 90 minutes.

The Dart line has reopened between Clongriffin and Malahide and the Northern Commuter service has resumed. The Dundalk/Newry line was closed earlier.

About 60 roads in Northern Ireland have been closed and work is ongoing to remove obstructions. However, road users should continue to take care driving as weather warnings remain in place until 10pm this evening.