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Jan 3: Storm causes problems | Print |  Email
Tuesday, 03 January 2012

Severe weather is causing problems in many parts of the country this morning. Storm force winds have disrupted travel by prompting the closure of a bridge in Donegal and another in Derry, by keeping the fast ferry from Larne to Cairnryan in dock and by bringing trees down on roads in various parts of the country. Motorists have been warned to take great care but there are no reports of weather-related injuries.

Some 11,000 homes lost power overnight but ESB crews are busy repairing faults, most of which have been caused by falling trees. The North West took the brunt of the storm and experienced the vast majority of the power cuts.

Wind gusts of up to 160km/h (100mph) were recorded overnight and, although it is not quite as stormy at present, wind strengths are expected to increase later in the day. 

No end in sight to house price decline

The latest data published by the two leading property websites shows a further drop in house prices over the final three months of the year. Average selling prices on were down 13% over the course of the year while recorded an even bigger drop of 18%. Over the course of the final quarter, prices at Daft fell by 7.7%. 

Nationally, MyHome notes that asking prices are down by 43% from the peak, some five years ago, while prices in Dublin have fallen by 50% over the same period.

According to Daft, the average asking price nationally is just over €175k, some 52% below its peak of €366.

Assaulted student dies in hospital

Andrew Dolan (20), from Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Leitrim, who was seriously injured in an assault before Christmas, died in hospital on the evening of New Year's Day. The bio-medical science student at NUI Galway had been socialising in Mullingar, Co. Westmeath, in the early of December 23 when he was the victim of what was described as an unprovoked attack. Initially he was admitted to Mullingar General Hospital with head injuries but later transferred to Dublin's Beaumont Hospital where he was placed on life support.

Gardaí arrested and later released to men and a woman in the aftermath of the incident and a file is being prepared for the DPP.  

Three die on roads in first 25 hours of 2012

While road deaths in 2011 were at a record low, falling below 200 for the first time since records began, 2012 got off to a bad start with three people dying in traffic accidents in a little more than 24 hours from the start of the year.

A 22-year-old man became the first road victim of the year at around 2:00am on New Year's Day when he lost control of his car and crashed into a wall on the N3 at Virginia, Co. Cavan.

In the afternoon, at approximately 1:30pm, a woman in her late 60s was fatally injured when the car she was driving crashed into a ditch on the R733 at Haggard, near Ramsgrange, about five miles north of Fethard-on-Sea.

Early the following morning, shortly after 12:30am, a 52-year-old man was killed in a single-vehicle accident in Co. Mayo. The 23-year-old driver lost control of the car at Kilsallagh, about four miles from Louisburgh, on the Westport road. The driver and a second passenger, aged 19, escaped injury.

Today's Papers

Economics take the top spot in all four papers this morning. The Irish Times leads with "Troika warns welfare cuts and income tax rises look unavoidable", while the Irish Examiner looks at the property market with "House prices at 50% of peak values". The Irish Independent focuses on a disagreement between Michael Noonan and Brendan Howlin over the salary for the new secretary general at the Department of Finance under the headline "Ministers split over pay cap for finance job".

The Irish News headline is "Schools in crisis as debts soar out of control".

The Weather in Galway

It is both wet and windy this morning but not so severe as overnight. We are also enjoying some sunny spells. Temperature 6C

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