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ophelia

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Storm Ophelia left a path of destruction as it passed over Ireland yesterday, in what experts are calling with most severe weather event witnessed here since the 1960s.

Buildings were destroyed, roads were blocked and with 200,000 household and businesses without power today, recovery efforts are only just beginning.

However, it looks like we may have batten down the hatches once again as Storm Brian makes its way toward the island.

Tweeting early this morning, TV3 weatherman Deric Ó hArtagáin shared a picture of the developing weather system.

The storm is forecast for this weekend and is said to have low pressure intensity, similar to that of ex-Hurricane Ophelia.

Winds are set to reach 100 km/h, particularly the South and West Coast.

Keep an eye on met.ie for updates throughout the week. 

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Some 245,000 homes and businesses remain without electricity this morning after ex-Hurricane Ophelia brought gusts of up to 190km/h which tore down power lines across the country.

The ESB has said that most customers will be back on the grid within three to four days, though it could take up to 10 days to restore supply to all areas.

Spokeswoman Bernadine Maloney, said: “We are prioritising electricity to infrastructure, such as water and communications.”

“The northern part of the country hasn't been as badly affected and when the power is restored there, including Northern Ireland, we will have crews there to help with the restoration effort.”

The electricity provider has also urged the public to stay away from fallen trees as there may be cable hidden within the debris. ESB Emergency Services can be contacted at 1850372999. 

It's estimated that around 20,000 households are without water today, with Irish Water warning that this number could rise significantly depending on electricity supply returning to treatment plants.

Meanwhile 30,000 Eir customers have had their services affected, and that number is expected to rise today as back-up batteries run out.

The National Emergency Coordination Group will meet this morning at 10am to assess damage reports from across the country following Storm Ophelia.

Feature Image: Twitter 

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Ahead of hurricane Ophelia's arrival in Ireland today, it was confirmed that all schools and third-level institutions across the country would remain closed.

This afternoon, it was announced that primary and secondary schools would stay closed tomorrow as well, leaving many third-level students wondering as to the status of their respective institution.

Minister for Education, Richard Bruton, took to Twitter this afternoon to confirm the reports and provide clarity to the public.

"It is recognised that the decision to close schools will have a major impact on families and on the workforce. However, this decision has been taken in the interests of safety for children and to provide clarity for everyone concerned," he tweeted.

Turning his attention to third-level institutions around Ireland, he asserted that it is up to the individual institution as to whether they will re-open to staff and students.

"Regarding 3rd level, it is up to individual institution to decide whether to open, giving utmost consideration to safety of staff & students," he confirmed online.

DCU, it's over to you…

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A third person has died as a result of today's extreme weather conditions.

According to emerging reports, a man has been killed in Co Louth after the car he was travelling in was struck by a falling tree.

It is understood that the incident occurred at approximately 2.45pm in Ravensdale, near Dundalk.

The news comes following the death of a woman in Co Waterford and a man in Co Tipperary earlier today.

Authorities are urging the public to exercise extreme caution today, with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar reminding the nation that danger will still exist even after the storm passes.

 

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According to emerging reports, the storm which is currently raging across the country has claimed the life of a second person.

It is understood that a man in Cahir, Co Tipperary died after making attempts to clear a fallen tree with a chainsaw.

The man, who is believed to be in his 30s, sustained critical injuries and died as a result.

His body has been removed to Clonmel Hospital.

The news follows the death of a woman in Co Waterford who lost her life after her car was hit by a falling tree at Aglish.

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The Peter McVerry Trust has announced it is opening extra communal spaces and extending hours as Hurricane Ophelia batters the country today. 

The homeless charity are doing so in response to the Red Weather Warnings issued by Met Éireann yesterday evening. 

Anyone who encounters rough sleepers today is urged to advise them to access emergency shelter.

Additional communal spaces will be open at Richmond Street and Aungier Street, and transport will be provided to ensure that all members of the homeless community can avail of the shelter over the next 24 hours. 

A spokesperson for the charity said: “Peter McVerry Trust is constant contact with the Dublin Region Homeless Executive and will take any additional measures we can to ensure the safety of people in homelessness during Storm Ophelia.” 

A number of businesses have also invited rough sleepers to seek shelter in their premises. 

Emergency hostels at Little Britain Street, Brú Aimsir, Mount Brown and Blessington Street will also remain open throughout the course of the day with a total of 210 beds available for over night accommodation. 

No homeless person should have to put their life at risk by sleeping rough tonight, which is why it is vitally important that we share this information with those who may not be able to access it. 

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Members of the public who were relying on the Luas to get them home today will need to make alternative arrangements following the announcement the tram service will be brought to a halt in the next two hours.

According to the website, the decision has been made to suspend services due to the imminent arrival of hurricane Ophelia in the country's capital.

"The Luas Red and Green Line services will be curtailed from 10 am onwards today.Trams are being brought back to the Luas depots where they will be stored safely," read the statement.

"There will be no tram service from approx. midday for the remainder of the day," it continued.

This decision was made for a number of reasons which they cited in ther statement, writing: "Electricity in the overhead power lines must be turned off and cannot be turned on until a visual and technical inspection is under taken this evening."

They added: "Staff Safety is our priority and the infrastructure will also need to be checked for debris and water levels."

Luas will review the situation on an ongoing basis and is taking advice from Met Éireann and the National Emergency Coordination Committee. 

It has been confirmed that normal service will resume tomorrow at 05.30.

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Hundreds of students have been left disappointed after NUIG announced it would reschedule today's planned graduation ceremony due to the effects of hurricane Ophelia. 

"NUI Galway will be closed tomorrow Monday 16th October due to the arrival of Storm Ophelia," a post on the university's Facebook page read. 

"In the interests of safety, staff and students are not expected to attend the University. A skeleton staff will be on campus during the morning to give advice and guidance to anyone not receiving this message. All conferring ceremonies which were scheduled for tomorrow will now take place on Saturday (21st October)."  

The announcement came late yesterday evening, and while the safety of staff and students is the number one priority, many graduates have been left frustrated by the lack of notice. 

One commented: "Lads this is disgraceful. People's families have travelled, money has been spent and now people will miss their family members graduating. You've made a massive mistake."

Another said: "This is an absolute joke. How am I meant to reschedule my plans with 5 days notice? I work on weekends and I mightn't even be able to attend my own grad. Absolute disgrace." 

Family and friends of graduates had made arrangements months in advance with some even spending up to €500 on hotel rooms for the night. 

"The timing of the cancellation of Monday’s graduations is appalling. We were on route to Galway when you finally posted. Our hotel has advised they have to charge, almost €500 which could’ve been avoided at 24 hours notice, i.e before 4pm. We all knew about storm Ophelia before 4pm today."

As mentioned in the statement, a 'skeleton staff' will be on campus tomorrow morning to inform any students who may not have received the message overnight. 

The University has apologised for the inconvenience caused and has said it expects business to resume as normal on Tuesday. 

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Us Irish don't really cope well with emergencies, now do we?

As the country braces itself for extreme winds and heavey rainfall, courtesy of ex-hurricane Ophelia, the Twitter folk of Ireland have done what they do best – make a complete joke out of a serious situation. 

But seriously, who needs actual hurricane prep when we can laugh at memes instead? 

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Late yesterday evening, Met Éireann extended its Red Weather Warning to the entire country, meaning all schools and many businesses have been forced to close their doors for the day. 

As ex-hurricane Ophelia makes its way across the Atlantic and over the island of Ireland, transport companies across the country are gearing up for a day of disruption and travel chaos. 

This is where we stand so far: 

Luas

Both Red and Green lines are up and running though the company has asked customers to check social media for updates throughout the day. 

Dublin Bus 

As of now, Dublin Bus services are operating as normal, though 'significant disruption' is expected during off-peak times (9.00-18.00), including the possibility of no service during this time. 

Customers have also been warned they may experience delays and disruption on those routes that are in operation. 

Iarnród Éireann 

Train services on DART Intercity and commuter are currently in operation, with the exception of the following routes:

  • Limerick Junction to Waterford

  • Limerick to Ballybrophy via Nenagh 

A speed restriction of 80 kilometres per hour is also in place, resulting in delays of 15 – 30 minutes on the following services:

  • Cork to Dublin

  • Tralee to Cork and Dublin

  • Waterford to Dublin

  • Rosslare Europort to Dublin 

Bus Éireann 

As it stands, all Bus Éireann services nationwide have been cancelled between 5.00 and 14.00 today. More updates are expected later in the morning. 

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Strong winds and heavy rain are forecast for Monday as ex-hurricane Ophelia makes it way across the Atlantic and up towards Ireland.

Met Éireann has this morning warned that counties in Munster and south Leinster will likely see the most damaging effects of the storm.

“The winds will veer southwesterly as the low pressure system tracks northwards over western parts of the country. Flooding is threatened due to potentially heavy falls of rain and very high seas. Top temperatures of 15 to 19 degrees.”

“There are likely to be changes to the warnings which will be updated later this morning, pending the latest up to date guidance. This is an evolving situation and your patience is appreciated.”

The latest cautioning comes after Status Red weather warnings were issued for Galway, Mayo, Clare, Cork and Kerry.

A Status Orange wind warning is in place for the rest of the country and road users have been urged to check traffic conditons before travelling.

Brian Farrell, Communications Manager with the RSA, said cyclists need to be particularly careful.

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