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'Big risk of flooding' - Status Orange wind warning issued nationwide as country braces itself for Storm Brendan

  • Warning in place from Monday morning
  • RSA issues advice to motorists and pedestrians
  • Galway authorities have reinforced flood walls
  • Section of Salthill promenade to close from 7pm
  • Two Dublin bridges closed for part of the day

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Walkers pictured at the South Bull wall as high winds churn up the sea during high tide.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath
11/1/20

Walkers pictured at the South Bull wall as high winds churn up the sea during high tide.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath 11/1/20

Walkers pictured at the South Bull wall as high winds churn up the sea during high tide.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath 11/1/20

Met Eireann has issued a Status Orange wind warning nationwide for tomorrow as the country braces itself for Storm Brendan to hit.

Widespread flooding and gusts of up to 130km per hour are likely on Monday, the forecaster said.

The warning, for heavy gusts, is in place for Connacht, Donegal and Kerry, for the hours between 5am and 9pm on Monday, saying it will produce "extremely windy or stormy conditions", heavy rain and a risk of lighting and thunder.

The orange wind warning is also in place for Leinster, Cavan, Monaghan, Clare, Cork, Limerick, Tipperary and Waterford between 8am and 3pm on Monday.

Evelyn Cusack, Head of Forecasting for Met Eireann, warned that, despite wind speeds of over 130kmh predicted, the most significant risk is that of widespread flooding.

"It's a very deep, active storm," she told Independent.ie.

"There will be very high seas on the Atlantic Coast, and this combined with a high tide and storm surge, leaves a high risk of coastal flooding around all of Ireland, not just on the West.

"There is a big risk of flooding. Local authorities have been warned and are prepared."

Dublin City Council said that they “have been monitoring the forthcoming unsettled weather” and as its result, they will be erecting flood defences and have closed the car parks at Clontarf and Sandymount from 6am tomorrow.

In Galway, where recent flooding caused damage to dozens of cars, City Council crews have been reinforcing the flood barrier at Fishmarket, Spanish Arch in the city centre. A section of the Promenade in Salthill will close from 7.00pm today between Seapoint and Grattan Road and the car-parks at Toft Park, where the cars were previously damaged, and along the Prom will close from 2.00pm on Sunday.

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Paula Kearns and Caitriona Harvey from Bundoran, Co Donegal pictured at the South Bull wall 
Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

Paula Kearns and Caitriona Harvey from Bundoran, Co Donegal pictured at the South Bull wall Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

Paula Kearns and Caitriona Harvey from Bundoran, Co Donegal pictured at the South Bull wall Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

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"The Severe Weather Assessment Team will continue to monitor the situation and will put further measures in place as necessary on Sunday and throughout Monday," Gary McMAhon, a spokesperson for the Council told Independent.ie.

"Bígí Cúramach. Stay safe."

The RSA has warned drivers to be careful of objects blowing onto the road due to the storm, as well as fallen debris.

They have advised motorists to drive with dipped headlights at all times and to be aware that cyclists need more space due to flooding and fallen debris, while they could also be blown off course due to the winds.

Dublin Port Company have also temporarily closed public access to the Great South Wall - the wall out to Poolbeg Lighthouse - from 11am until 4pm and and the North Bull Wall Bridge - the main bridge to Bull Island - 12pm until 2.30pm.

Ms Cusack said that Storm Brendan will not be long-lasting, however, and by evening time on Monday its major effects will have subsided.

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12/1/20 Dublin city council shore up flood defences on Clontarf ahead of the forecasted storm. Picture: Arthur Carron.

12/1/20 Dublin city council shore up flood defences on Clontarf ahead of the forecasted storm. Picture: Arthur Carron.

12/1/20 Dublin city council shore up flood defences on Clontarf ahead of the forecasted storm. Picture: Arthur Carron.

"The storm will begin at 7am all along the South-West, West and North-West coasts and transfer eastwards. The peak from 7am in the West and the peak in the East for Louth Meath Dublin Wicklow and Wexford probably around midday to 2pm," Ms Cusack said.

"The feature here is the high risk of flooding, but it is a storm so we're expecting gusts of 130kmh. In terms of impact, it's impossible to forecast as such, but this time of year the trees are bare, they're not in leaf so there is a risk of trees coming down across the country.

"It will be rapidly decreasing but it will be continuing in the West and North-West but it will all be gone by teatime on the same day. It's a 12-hour event but in the North-West it could last longer."

The poor weather will not end then, however as Storm Ciara is likely to be named by UK forecasters today. While Ireland will not receive the brunt of the storm, its edge will produce rain over Ireland, which due to the cold weather may freeze.

"When the storm subsides, there will be a rapid decrease in conditions," Ms Cusack said.

"For Tuesday though there will be a risk of some sleety snow. There's a possibility of Storm Ciara being named by the UK Met Office, tracking across the South of England. That won't affect us but we'll have to keep an eye on that.

"We'll get the rain from that storm, if it is named, but it will be cold over Ireland on Tuesday so that rain could turn to sleet or even snow on high ground across the country.

"Overall the weather for the coming week is very, very unsettled. we've a very intense jet streams over Ireland steering in these Atlantic systems."


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