UPDATE (1.09pm): Clare County Council says it expects water levels on the Lower River Shannon at Springfield to increase this evening having dropped by 200mm during Thursday.
The Council says the anticipated increase relates to the ESB's decision to increase the spill rate at Parteen Weir today and rising water levels on the Mulkear River, which enters the River Shannon south of Annacotty.
— BBC Weather (@bbcweather) January 1, 2016
UPDATE (11.39am): The ESB is to increase the flow of water through the Parteen Weir.
The water in Lough Derg is expected to reach peak levels last seen in 2009.
The current rate of flow is 470 cubic metres per second - but it could be increased to 500 cubic metres per second in the coming days.
The situation will be reviewed again tomorrow.
Cold, cloudy & windy today, with widespread rain, persistent & heavy in places, but especially in S & E coastal counties. Highs 7to10C.— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) January 1, 2016
Earlier: Met Éireann has issued a new Status Yellow rainfall warning for nine counties this morning.
The forecaster has warned that up to 35mm of rain is expected in counties Dublin, Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford, Wicklow, Cork, Kerry, Tipperary and Waterford, “with possibly higher totals on mountains”.
“Rain is expected today Friday and overnight, but should turn more showery during Saturday morning,” Met Éireann stated.
The warning remains in effect until 9am tomorrow morning.
SAT [EU] 0945: pic.twitter.com/IVVKvVEtYI— Cork Harbour Weather (@CorkHarbourWX) January 1, 2016
Jim Casey from the Office of Public Works is warning that the River Shannon is continuing to rise.
“We are saying that we are currently still in a sever flood situation on the Shannon catchment, and that’s a situation that will remain for some time to come,” he said.
“So ongoing efforts will have to continue, ongoing flood defence efforts, pumping etc., will need to be continued for some time.”
The Road Safety Authority is reminding people to be extremely careful when driving in poor conditions this morning.
The RSA’s Brian Farrell said that driving through floods is treacherous and may put lives at risk.
“The most important thing of all, and unfortunately we’ve seen this on a lot of Facebook and social media posts, and that is people attempting to drive through flooded roads,” he said.
“Look, at the very best, it’ll destroy your engine. At worst, you could end up putting your life or others at risk, and diverting the emergency services, who are already stretched trying to deal with the emergencies in various parts of the country.”
Taoiseach Enda Kenny will meet with Ministers today to discuss the impact of Storm Frank - there will also be a briefing from the Government's flood taskforce.
The Taoiseach today received further briefings from his Ministers and emergency officials at the special meeting in Government Buildings.
He also updated his colleagues on his visit to the Shannon basin yesterday, including a number of hard hit areas around Athlone.
" I have directed that the appropriate government departments bring memos to next Tuesday's Cabinet meeting outlining actions taken to date, and what further measures than can be taken to mitigate the suffering of those affected," he stated.
"This is to include a memo from the Department of the Environment on long term flood forecasting, and harnessing an ability to coordinate data from all relevant agencies.
He added: "Indications are that adverse weather will continue, so I've asked that all Ministers and officials remain vigilant and continue to manage the flood challenges across the country."
Tánaiste Joan Burton said: " I have seen at first hand the bravery shown by people faced with the recent appalling weather.
"I want to commend all of the emergency and voluntary services and the Local Authorities for their sterling work, and to remind everyone that further adverse weather is forecast, and challenges remain.
"I also want to remind people that the Community Welfare Services are available to everyone in flood affected areas and I urge people to avail of these services."