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15th Oct 2017

Met Éireann hold emergency talks as Hurricane Ophelia upgraded to Category 3

The storm is expected to make landfall in the early hours of Monday morning.

Rory Cashin

Batten down the hatches.

Met Éireann announced this morning that they are having a national emergency meeting on Sunday morning, following conference calls with both the UK’s Meteorological offices and the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Centre.

These meetings seem to be taking place as the potential strength of Hurricane Ophelia and the potential severity of the damaged and disruption caused when it makes landfall in Ireland has increased.

A status red wind warning has been put in place for Galway, Mayo, Cork, Kerry and Clare, with the official warning stating that:

“Hurricane Ophelia is expected to transition to a post tropical storm as it approaches our shores on Monday bringing severe winds and stormy conditions.

“Mean wind speeds in excess of 80 km/h and gusts in excess of 130 km/h are expected, potentially causing structural damage and disruption, with dangerous marine conditions due to high seas and potential flooding.”

According to reports, no other major hurricane in recorded history has ever formed anywhere near the position of Hurricane Ophelia, so the full extent of its power and trajectory are proving to be more difficult to predict than other storms and hurricanes.

A status orange wind warning has also been put in place for the rest of the country, and both the red and orange warning statuses are in place from 9am on Monday to 3am on Tuesday.