Thursday 18 January 2018

Explainer: Everything you need to know about Storm Brian as it hits today

Gina Casey, from Ennistymon, struggles with the high wind on the
Lahinch coastline of Co Clare. Photo: Brian Arthur
Gina Casey, from Ennistymon, struggles with the high wind on the Lahinch coastline of Co Clare. Photo: Brian Arthur
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

As the nation comes to terms with the devastation caused by Storm Ophelia, a second storm is beginning to hit Ireland.

What can we expect with Storm Brian?

Five counties that were hammered by Hurricane Ophelia are now on high alert for flooding amid warnings of a potential "weather bomb" due to torrential rainfall and high tides.

Met Éireann has issued two Status Orange warnings and three Status Yellow warnings as Storm Brian is set to strike later today.

The latest storm will bring potential wind gusts of up to 110kmh to 130kmh from this evening until lunchtime tomorrow.

However, most concern will surround the fact that potentially up to 50mm of rainfall will hit parts of Cork, Tipperary, Waterford and Limerick.

Coupled with a high tide in Cork, there is now a fear of flooding along low-lying coastal areas and parts of Cork city centre.

There is a risk of coastal flooding across the south and south-west.

Met Eireann forecaster Evelyn Cusack told RTÉ's Morning Ireland that gale force winds are expected tonight.

"Yesterday we had up to 30 millimetres of rain. It's a lovely sunny morning but there's another spell of rain coming up the country with about 20 to 50 millimetres of rain between today and tomorrow. This could lead to a risk of local flooding. Winds are picking up steadily today and Storm Brian as we've called it will be gradually pushing in this evening and tonight. There will be strong to gale force winds this evening and tonight and tomorrow veering west to north west.

"It's going to get very stormy tomorrow through some western and southern areas.

"There will be very high seas so there will be risk of coastal flooding and do take the warning of the coastguards seriously and don't go out because huge Atlantic waves will be crashing on the west-coast."

Ms Cusack said that trees that were damaged by Storm Ophelia may be at risk of falling due to the strong winds.

"Because it's a depression, all of the directions are changing."

She added that it will last until Saturday night.

"It looks much better on Sunday. Take care everyone."

Will Ireland be badly impacted?

Met Eireann told Independent.ie that "at the moment, Storm Brian is nothing to worry about here in Ireland".

"It's a moving depression rather than a hurricane. It's moving south and will bring a lot of rain and strong winds. I don't think it will hit Ireland as hard as it will hit the UK."

However, the bad weather could hamper efforts to restore power and water to thousands of people who were impacted by Storm Ophelia.

When is the bad weather expected?

Storm Brian is expected to hit today as it will be wet and windy, and the weather will gradually move south-east. Saturday and Sunday will also see a lot of heavy rain and strong winds as Storm Brian passes through Ireland.

Are more big storms likely to hit Ireland?

Maynooth Geography Professor John Sweeney told RTE Radio One that Storm Brian won't be a "big beast".

"Tropical storm Philippe has already formed in the Atlantic after Ophelia.

"Brian will be the next one in the sequence and by the weekend it does look like it's turning unsettled again but it's all relative. We won't have the same occurrence as Ophelia hopefully for a very long time. We're back to the normal winter storms climate, not the kind of big beast we saw Monday."

Met Eireann said that there is no indication that there are any more storms next week.

Online Editors

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Also in this section