Evening top 5: US drops 'mother of all bombs'; Bus Éireann lifts some pickets

The top stories on Newstalk.com this evening

The US military says it has dropped the "mother of all bombs" on a series of caves used by Islamic State in eastern Afghanistan.

It is the first time this type of bomb has been used in combat, Pentagon spokesman Adam Stump said.

It was dropped from an MC-130 aircraft in the Achin district of Nangarhar province, very close to the border with Pakistan.

The GBU-43 bomb, weighing 21,600 lbs (9,797kg), is GPS-guided, contains 11 tonnes of explosives and is the US military's largest non-nuclear device.

Its nickname, 'the mother of all bombs', is based on the name given to it by the US Air Force - 'Massive Ordnance Air Blast' bomb and it is regarded as particularly effective against clusters of targets on or just underneath the ground.


Bus Éireann workers are set to return to work following 21 days of strike action after the Labour Court issued its recommendation on the dispute this afternoon.

The company has said it could be lunchtime tomorrow before all services are up and running.

The general secretary of the National Bus and Rail Union, Dermot O’Leary welcomed the Labour Court recommendation and commended union members for showing “tremendous dignity throughout what has been an extremely difficult dispute.”


A preliminary report into the fatal crash of Coast Guard Rescue Helicopter 116 has found that the aircraft's on board warning system did not include data relating to Blackrock Island.

The helicopter crashed into the island off the coast of Co Mayo on March 14th, with the loss of all four crew members on board.

The bodies of Captain Dara Fitzpatrick and Captain Mark Duffy have been recovered but two others, winch operator Paul Ormsby and winch man Ciarán Duffy, remain lost at sea.


The average age of Irish women having a baby in 2016 continues to rise.

In 2016, the average age of first time mothers rose to 33. On top of that, 43,761 less women aged 20-39 had babies compared to those recorded in the 2011 Census figures.

Children born to every woman aged 70-74 in 2016 averaged 3.27.

Newstalk.com asked - is egg-freezing the answer?


If you're thinking of spending the long weekend sorting out holiday plans, Ryanair is keen to ensure you're flying with them over the next couple of months.

The low fares airline has launched its Easter sale today, with seats from €19.99 on over 900 routes across its European network.

The slashed seat prices are currently available for travel in April and May.

Flights must be booked online before midnight on Tuesday, April 18th.