Road Safety Authority issue advice to motorists as Storm Brendan reaches Ireland
Take note if you're out and about.
The Road Safety Authority (RSA), is asking road users to exercise caution while using the roads as Storm Brendan reaches Ireland.
At present, a status orange weather warning is in place for the whole country with strong winds and a risk of coastal flooding expected.
Met Eireann have issued an orange weather warning for Connacht, Donegal and Kerry from 5am to 9pm on Monday 13 January.
A second orange weather warning is in place for Leinster, Cavan, Monaghan, and the rest of Munster from 8am to 3pm.
Met Éireann have forecast that gusts of up to 130km/h could be registered in Atlantic coastal areas later today.
Earlier this morning, gusts of up to 96km/h were reported in Belmullet, Mayo.
There is a significant risk of coastal flooding due to the combination of high spring tides and storm surge.
On this note, the RSA has issued the following advice to motorists;
- Control of a vehicle may be affected by strong cross winds. High sided vehicles and motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to strong winds.
- Beware of objects being blown onto the road. Expect road conditions to change quickly in high winds so reduce your speed.
- Watch out for falling/fallen debris on the road and vehicles veering across the road.
- Drivers should allow extra space allow between themselves and vulnerable road users, such as cyclists and motorcyclists as they may be blown off course by strong winds.
- Motorists should also be aware that cyclists may need more road space than normal due to flooding, fallen debris and wind gusts. Give them plenty of space to navigate any obstacles that may be in front of them.
- Drive with dipped headlights at all times.
- If the road ahead is flooded choose another route, do not attempt to drive through it. Flooded roads that appear shallow could be deeper than you think. They may also have trees or branches that have fallen that may not be visible.
- Road users should always follow recommended routes and obey signs closing roads to traffic.
- After going through water, drive slowly with your foot on the brake pedal for a short distance - this helps to dry the brakes.
The RSA has also issued the following information to pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists;
- In areas affected by the orange warnings, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists should consider delaying or cancelling any planned trip.
- In other areas they should keep safe by making sure you can be seen. Wear bright clothing with reflective armbands or a reflective belt.
- Take extra care when crossing the road or cycling in extremely windy conditions as a sudden gust of wind could blow you into the path of an oncoming vehicle.
- Walk on a footpath, where possible and not in the street. If there is a footpath and it is safe to use, look out for falling debris from above, especially in urban areas.
- Walk on the right-hand side of the road, facing traffic if there are no footpaths.
- Cyclist should ensure that they and their bike are visible to other road users by investing in a good set of front and rear lights (white at the front, red at the back) and by wearing clothes that help you be seen on your bike such as bright and light reflective items.