The tailback of Hurricane Ophelia is set to hit Ireland in the early hours of Monday morning, with preparations well and truly underway to protect ourselves.
Fve counties have been issued with a status red weather warning from 9am in the morning. This included counties Kerry, Cork, May, Clare and Galway. The rest have been issued a status orange and winds are forecast to reach higher than 140 km/hr in places.
School buses have been cancelled, with Bus Éireann cancelling all services in the five counties given a red status warning. The Department of Education has told schools in these counties to stay closed. These decisions were made for the protection of the children from the storm. Other schools and colleges have also decided to keep their doors closed, with many anticapting the worst.
The ESB are also on alert for outages, with countrywide structural damage expected. The ESB have warned people over the dangers of fallen cables also. People have been urged to treat the storm with caution and Met Éireann warned it could even be as bad as Storm Debbie, which killed 15 people in the 60’s. Members of the Irish Defence Forces are currently on standby for the storm.
People have begun stocking up on foods and drinks in preparation. While they have also begun purchasing candles, torches and batteries incase of power outages. Properties across the country are being thoroughly checked and people advised to secure any loose equipment, outside furniture.
Machinery, livestock and pets have been moved to safety, as Ireland prepares for the gale force winds and torrential rain which may result in localised flooding. Sandbags have been purchased and trees trimmed, with extensive structural damage expected. Coast Guards meanwhile have urged people to cancel and tours or walks along Irish coasts, with sea levels expected to surge.
People are advised to check their property for any loose equipment, potential falling hazards and roofs for loose slates or tiles. They have also been urged to prepare a home storm kit, with medicine, emergency numbers, torches and a first aid kit recommended, by the AA. People are advised to avoid travel if at all possible.
Are you storm ready? Complete our checklist of things to do in prepartion for a storm here.