Soldiers are clearing footpaths in Naas today

Weather crisis

Paul O'Meara


Paul O'Meara


Soldiers are clearing footpaths in Naas today

Soldiers at work in Naas today

Defence Forces personnel were deployed to the streets of Naas today.

A group of about eight soldiers arrived this afternoon to clear footpaths of compacted snow and ice - and were warmly received by the returning shoppers.

They joined Kildare County Council staff and contractors employed by the local authority to help restore traffic and pedestrian routes to safe use.

The town, which has virtually closed down, for the past two days returned to something approaching normality today.

The main street to is safe to drive, though the footpaths - notwithstanding the herculean efforts of the soldiers - are dangerous in places because of the snow and ice.

Most housing estates in the area are still extremely difficult to drive through, pending the arrival of rain which was forecast by Met Eireann to visit later today and tomorrow.

In the absence of this many residents in areas like Craddockstown,  Monread and the Kilcullen Road have taken to their own roads armed with shovels to clear the arctic debris into piles.

The roads on the outskirts of the town are still difficult to negotiate and in many cases only one lane is open - roughly the width of a snow plough.

In more rural areas the situation is even more dangerous for the public. Parts of the  Rathasker Road  has seen snow drifting to a height of eight feet.

Virtually all of the foodstores reopened but there are still some empty shelves.

There was no bread of milk available in Super Valu at Fairgreen, however more supplies are are expected there later today.