Emergency services in Co Clare have been dealing with multiple road traffic collisions this evening as a Status Yellow snow and ice warning for Ireland remains in place.
Crashes have been reported on several routes in the county including on the M18 motorway.
Collisions were first reported at around 5.45pm on the M18 between Crusheen, Co Clare and Gort in Galway. The crashes, all single-vehicle incidents, occurred following heavy downpours of hail in the area.
Units of the fire service from Ennis and Gort responded to the incidents along with Gardaí and National Ambulance Service paramedics.
One collision was reported in the northbound lanes of the M18 at Tubber however, on arrival at the scene, emergency services discovered another incident had occurred in the same area in the southbound carriageway. A third incident also occurred nearby in the northbound lanes further along the route. No one was injured in any of the collisions.
Meanwhile, a short distance away on the R458 road which runs parallel to the motorway, the first of two accidents happened at around 6.00pm. A car left the road and crashed into the ditch at Ballyline, between the villages of Barefield and Crusheen, after the driver apparently lost control following a hail shower. The driver was uninjured.
Soon afterwards, another collision was reported just a few hundred metres away on the same stretch of road however in this case, three persons were reported to be trapped in the vehicle.
Three elderly people, understood to have travelling home from a funeral, were left shaken but not seriously hurt after the car in which they were travelling collided with a ditch.
As fire crews from Ennis were dealing with collisions on the motorway units of the service from Shannon station were dispatched to the incident. They were joined later by the crews from Ennis.
All three occupants were assessed at the scene by ambulance paramedics but were found not to have been seriously hurt. The man and two women were transported to University Hospital Limerick for assessment as a precaution.
Met Éireann has issued a Status Yellow snow and ice warning for the entire country for tonight. The warning came into effect at 4.00pm and will remain in place until 11.00am tomorrow.
The weather service says scattered showers of hail, sleet and snow, and icy stretches can be expected on Thursday evening, Thursday night and Friday morning which will lead to hazardous travelling conditions in some parts.