Thursday 13 December 2018

Met Éireann issues heavy rain warning ahead of weekend, warns of spot flooding

  • Risk of spot flooding this afternoon

  • Commuters in capital still experiencing travel disruption after Storm Ali

  • Second day of National Ploughing Championships cancelled yesterday

  • Some exhibitors planning to attend extra day of Ploughing worried they may have to fork out for extra insurance costs and see smaller crowds

Motorist had a lucky escape after a tree fell on car Photo: An Garda Siochana
Motorist had a lucky escape after a tree fell on car Photo: An Garda Siochana
Damage done to a tent at the Ploughing Championships
National Ploughing Championships 2018. People take cover from the torrential rain at the championships. Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. People take cover from the torrential rain at the championships. Picture; Gerry Mooney
General view of muck at Ploughing Championships 2018 Day 2. Skreggan, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Picture: Caroline Quinn
General view of empty road during delayed opening of Ploughing Championships 2018 Day 2. Skreggan, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Picture: Caroline Quinn
General view of empty road during delayed opening of Ploughing Championships 2018 Day 2. Skreggan, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Picture: Caroline Quinn
General view of blocked entrance during delayed opening of Ploughing Championships 2018 Day 2. Skreggan, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Picture: Caroline Quinn
National Ploughing Championships 2018. Stewards Richard Sunders and Mark Kennedy make their way throufgh a deserted site as storm Ali arrives . Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. Portaloos blown over as storm Ali arrives in Tullamore. Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. Stewards Richard Sunders and Mark Kennedy make their way throufgh a deserted site as storm Ali arrives . Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. Portaloos blown over as storm Ali arrives in Tullamore. Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. Luke and Niamh Maguire from Kilrush in Co. Clare make their way around in the rain at the championships. Picture; Gerry Mooney
National Ploughing Championships 2018. People run for cover in the heavy rain at the championships. Picture; Gerry Mooney
A tree down at BusÁras (Photo: Independent.ie)
A tree down on O'Connell Street (Photo: Independent.ie)
A tree collapsed on a house near Fine Gael TD Noel Rock's home this morning (Photo: Noel Rock Twitter)
A tree down on the Kilbeggan to Clara Road in Co Offaly

Allison Bray, Amy Molloy and Claire Fox

Met Éireann has issued a Status Yellow rainfall warning for seven counties this morning and advised how a ‘very disturbed’ low pressure system heading our way could morph into the second named storm of the season.

The warning comes into effect for Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford, Wicklow, Cork, Tipperary and Waterford at 9pm this morning and will remain in place until 9pm tonight.

Rain will be persistent and heavy at times, especially during the afternoon.

There is a risk of spot flooding with up to 40mm of rain expected.

Meanwhile, forecasters are tracking the progress of what could become ‘Storm Bronagh’.

It is expected to reach Ireland as early as this weekend.

Met Éireann’s Deirdre Lowe said Storm Ali, which lashed the country yesterday, is a totally different scenario to what is currently brewing in the Atlantic.

“Ali was a small area but this could be more widespread,” she said.

People look out at the sea from Slea Head during Storm Ali in Coumeenoole, Ireland. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
People look out at the sea from Slea Head during Storm Ali in Coumeenoole, Ireland. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

However, forecasters won’t be able to get a clearer picture of what lies ahead until later today.

“It’s a very disturbed bit of weather but we’re still not 100pc sure.”

She said the weather system may become Storm Bronagh depending on how it develops.

“It’s still a possibility but it’s too early to call,” she said.

However, if the wide area of low pressure continues to build in the coming days, it could lead to very windy and wet weather on Sunday, she said.

Meanwhile, Met Éireann said people can expect more unsettled weather for the remainder of the week, with heavy rain expected today.

It will start out dry in many areas today, however rain will soon spread from the south-west and will turn heavy in Munster and much of Leinster with a risk of spot flooding.

Aftermath

Commuters in the capital are still experiencing travel disruption as a result of Storm Ali.

The Luas Green Line is operating from Brides Glen to Cowper and from Dawson to Broombridge. There are no services from Cowper to Dawson.

People can use their tickets on Dublin Bus for the duration of the service disruption.

Meanwhile, in Offaly, the decision was to open the National Ploughing Championships on Friday to make up for yesterday's cancellation due to weather damage.

However, some exhibitors planning to showcase their wares at the extra day of the National Ploughing Championships tomorrow are worried they may have to fork out for extra insurance costs and see smaller crowds.

The National Ploughing Championships contributes more than €35m to the local economy annually. As Wednesday is traditionally the day that attracts the largest crowds and revenue, organisers have extended the event until tomorrow to minimise the loss of yesterday's cancellation.

Exhibitor Grace Roche, owner of Pretty Bird farm clothing company, said there was no question she would be exhibiting tomorrow.

"We will be there Friday to regain the loss of today. Friday could be the best day of all. Hopefully we will get a crowd."

However, not all exhibitors were positive about the National Ploughing Association's (NPA) decision to extend the Ploughing.

Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers' Association general secretary Eddie Punch said he was concerned about the extra day as many businesses have other commitments.

"We have meetings in Dublin on Friday and I'd like my staff to be back at work. It could completely disrupt our workload," he said.

Timing

Mr Punch also criticised the NPA for not cancelling yesterday's event earlier.

"I know it's easy to say in hindsight but the decision to call off should have been made earlier. Trees were down and health and safety must take precedence. Once the call came in that it was being put off until 11am the fact whether it would go ahead was always dubious," he said.

The NPA organiser Anna May McHugh said the extent of the damage could not have been predicted and after receiving advice from gardaí and Met Éireann took the decision not to open yesterday.

Meanwhile, a source in a leading farm organisation said he was concerned about the substantial insurance costs that would be involved for exhibitors tomorrow as most were only insured until 6pm today. A spokesperson for Wood Pellet Stoves Ireland said they were worried they wouldn't get a large crowd tomorrow. "It's hard to know will we get the same numbers we could have gotten if Wednesday was a good day."

Irish Independent

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