Met Éireann upgrades weather warning

Met Éireann has upgraded a weather warning in effect in the south and west from code yellow - the lowest level - to code orange.

The orange level warning - in effect for counties Wexford, Galway, Mayo, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick and Waterford - comes as another storm is due to sweep in from the Atlantic over the next 24 hours, with high winds and tides creating a risk of further coastal flooding and heavy thundery downpours also possibily leading to local spot flooding inland.

Met Éireann said strong south to southeast winds, with gusts of 80 or 90km/h at first, will veer southwest this afternoon.

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

The warning is in effect until midday tomorrow.

(Waves breaking over Lahinch promenade during storm conditions on Friday night. Picture: George Karbus)

Meanwhile a yellow level warning remains in effect for Cavan, Monaghan, Donegal, Dublin, Carlow, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Longford, Louth, Wicklow, Offaly, Westmeath, Meath, Leitrim, Roscommon, Sligo and Tipperary, with winds tonight gusting up to 110km/h.

The continued bad weather is expected to hamper clean-up and repair operations including at the tourist and surf resort of Lahinch, Co Clare, which had its promenade destroyed in the last storm.

That bill is expected to be as high as €5m.

(Flooding in Lahinch after Thursday night's storm. Picture: Press 22)

Across the country, homeowners and businesses have been counting the cost with the series of storms estimated to have run up insurance claims of €200m - and in turn hitting premiums.

One of the worst flood-hit areas was Galway where the Spanish Arch area of the city was under several inches of water following high tides and storm, while in Cleggan in the county six cars were swept off the pier where the Inishbofin ferry docks.

The promenade in Salthill also took a battering in the storms while the Liffey burst its banks in the docks area of Dublin.

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