Advice to stay indoors has been lifted

The public safety advice for people to shelter indoors has been withdrawn as the blizzard conditions have passed.

The National Emergency Coordination Group issued the update earlier, but a red weather warning has been extended into Saturday for several areas.

The red snow-ice warning for Dublin, Kildare, Wexford, Wicklow and Meath will be in place until 9.00am on Saturday.

Met Éireann say snow accumulations are continuing to increase significantly due to further heavy falls of snow.

A status orange snow-ice warning for Munster, Carlow, Kilkenny, Laois, Longford, Louth, Offaly, Westmeath, Cavan, Monaghan and Galway is also in place until 9.00am Saturday.

While a status yellow snow-ice warning for Donegal, Leitrim, Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo has also been extended.

ESB Networks says around 34,000 homes and businesses are without power with Dublin, Louth, Kildare and Offaly the worst affected.

Public transport continues to be impacted - flights are grounded at the country’s airports and won’t resume until tomorrow.

Some 260 passengers were forced to sleep in Dublin Airport overnight.

There’s no Irish Rail, Dublin Bus or Luas services today.

But Irish Rail says it will start operating from midday on Saturday at the earliest.

Full details are available on the Irish Rail website.

Luas says services will not operate on Saturday morning – but a decision on when service can resume will be made at around 9.00am tomorrow.

Bus Éireann is hoping to operate limited services Saturday, while Dublin Bus hopes to operate services tomorrow, dependent on road and weather conditions.

A Shannon Airport spokeswoman confirmed the airport will re-open at 5.00am on Saturday, weather permitting.

In a statement, Ryanair says it plans to return to operations at all Irish airports tomorrow.

"We recommend customers check the status of their flight at Ryanair.com before making their way to the airport."

But it says it expects some further disruptions, and has had to cancel a number of flights to/from Dublin Airport.

It says all affected customers have already been notified of their options by email and text message.

While Aer Lingus says its Dublin short haul flight schedule will be disrupted tmorrow, with early morning flights cancelled and most operations not commencing until after 10.00am.

"We expect flights to/from Cork, Belfast, Knock to operate as scheduled. This is subject to further update.

"We await information on when Shannon is expected to become operational and we will update when this is confirmed".

Passengers are being directed to the Aer Lingus website

Gardaí have again urged motorists to avoid unnecessary journeys - with many roads remaining impassable.

Local authorities are prioritising the reopening of national routes and many smaller roads are still treacherous for driving.

Gardaí are asking people to remain off the roads unless absolutely necessary

Emergency services around the country have been praised for their work overnight as the country braved some of the most severe conditions in decades. 

Dublin Fire Brigade responded to a number of incidents last night - including a fire in Rathmines.

Officers have warned that even though the instruction to remain indoors has been lifted, people should still be sensible.

Colm Sherlock, from North Strand Fire Station gave Today Fm reporter Juliette Gash this advice:

Thousands of homes have also been left without water with burst mains and boil notices in numerous areas - there are major issues in Galway and Wicklow.

Authorities say it could be several hours before the full extent of the damage is known.