Hundreds left without power and roads blocked after storm hits

This picture of damage caused by a fallen tree at Tullynacross Road, Lisburn was posted on Twitter by NIE Networks.
This picture of damage caused by a fallen tree at Tullynacross Road, Lisburn was posted on Twitter by NIE Networks.

Hundreds of local households and businesses have been left without power after Storm Eleanor brought down powerlines and electricity poles across Northern Ireland last night.

NIE Networks has said its engineers are working to restore electricity supplies to thousands of customers after gusts of over 90mph wreaked havoc across the Province.

A spokesperson for NIE Networks said its staff are dealing with around 400 individual faults, including several in Lisburn and surrounding areas.

According to the Powercheck website, local areas affected by power cuts include Moira, Annahilt, Dunmurry and Aghalee.

“We’ve been working throughout the night to restore power to 20,000 customers. There are still 3,000 customers without power. Our emergency crews are working hard to get all customers back on supply,” NIE Networks tweeted.

“The damage caused by #StormEleanor includes powerlines brought down by falling trees & poles broken by the high winds. Our main incident centre in Craigavon & Local Incident Centres in NI are open & will co-ordinate the local repair process until all customers are back on supply.”

A further tweet added: “Put safety first and if you do see any trees down across powerlines or broken electricity poles, keep away and call NIE Networks immediately, call our Customer Helpline on 03457 643 643.”

A number of roads in the Lisburn and Castlereagh area were blocked on Wednesday due to fallen trees and/or flooding.

According to the Trafficwatch NI website, the following roads were blocked or partially blocked: Glenavy Road, Mullaghglass Road, Moneybroom Road, Tullynacross Road, Dagger Road, Ballycreen Road, Old Road, Lisburn, Brook Lodge Ballinderry, Brookmount Road, Forthill, Lisburn, Old Coach Road, Monlough Road and Ballymaconaghy Road.

According to updates on the website, many of the routes have now reopened to traffic.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday afternoon drivers were being advised to take extra care at the junction at McKinstry Road/The Cutts due to the traffic signals being out of order following to a power cut in the area.

Urging people to take extra care on the roads, the PSNI tweeted: “Police are advising motorists to reduce their speed and exercise caution on the roads. While most main routes are open, a number of minor roads are still closed due to fallen trees and other debris.”

On Wednesday afternoon, a spokesperson for Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council said its staff were still assessing the extent of the storm damage to council-owned land and property.

“We are aware of a number of fallen trees and branches at Moira Demense, Aberdelghy Golf Course, Moat Park and the Central Services Depot at Old Hillsborough Road, however we have no reports to date of significant damage caused to council buildings,” the spokesperson said.

“We have already begun to implement a clear up programme, beginning with those areas worst impacted.

“Once a full report of all damage has been completed, we will be reviewing the most appropriate ways to plan for future similar weather instances,” she added.