Thursday 17 October 2019

As storm season hits Ireland, here's the list of storms you can expect to see this winter

Surveys conducted after named storms show increases in awareness and action, weather forecasters said
Surveys conducted after named storms show increases in awareness and action, weather forecasters said Newsdesk Newsdesk

As Ireland prepares for 'Storm Brian' this weekend, brace yourself as Hector, Octavia, Tali and Winifred could be brewing up a storm in the coming months.

Earlier this week, ex-hurricane Ophelia battered the Irish coast and left behind a trial of destruction in its wake.

However Met Eireann told that the hurricane is not included in the alphabetical list of storms in Ireland and the UK as hurricanes have different warning systems.

In the list of hurricanes, Ophelia followed Hurricane Nate, while Hurricane Phillipe has already passed through the US and parts of the EU.

For Irish and UK storms, the names are chosen by duty forecasters in Met Eireann and in the Met Office.

The criteria for a storm being named are: "A wind storm with potential for significant land-based impact has been forecasted.

"A severe wind event giving rise to status Orange or status Red weather warnings.

"Consideration will also be given to rain and snow events."

The list alternates between the genders and this order will change each year.

The letters Q, U, X, Y and Z are not used to comply with international storm naming conventions.

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Gerald Fleming, Head of Forecasting at Met Éireann, said that while the names have been picked, it's impossible to say whether they will all be used.

He explained: "Last winter was a very quiet one weather-wise and we only worked our way through five named storms, from Angus to Ewan.

"While it is too early to say whether the coming winter will be a stormy one or a quiet one we are prepared with a whole new set of 21 names for whatever nature may throw at us.

"As before Met Eireann forecasters will work in close co-operation with our colleagues from the UK Met Office to keep all the peoples of these islands warned of impending severe weather."

Derrick Ryall, Head of Public Weather Services at the Met Office, said that the system is a good way to highlight weather conditions.

He said: “Last year was another successful pilot of the storm naming project and it’s great to be now making it operational.

"Naming storms has been proved to raise awareness of severe weather in the UK, crucially prompting people to take action to prevent harm to themselves or their property.”

The full list of Winter Storm names 2017-2018 are: Aileen, Brian, Caroline, Dylan, Eleanor, Fionn, Georgina, Hector, Iona, James, Karen, Larry, Maeve, Niall, Octavia, Paul, Rebecca, Simon, Tali, Victor, Winifred.

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