Storm Ciara is on course to hit Ireland on election day.
As the nation heads to the polls from 7am this Saturday, February 8th, it’s likely voters will be battling gale-force winds, heavy rain, hail and thunder en route.
As well as putting a dampener on the weekend, it seems Storm Ciara is also causing unforeseen problems in newsrooms.
The weekend: Saturday will start breezy and sunny but wet and windy conditions will arrive later in the day and spread to all areas during Saturday night. Sunday is expected to be extremely windy as #StormCaira sweeps in, bringing the risk of disruption. Stay tuned. pic.twitter.com/Ajo0idLNgW
— BBC Weather (@bbcweather) February 6, 2020
While newsreaders in the UK continue to struggle to pronounce ‘Ciara’ correctly (the BBC even spelled in ‘Caira’ on Twitter, making things even more complicated) we’ve compiled a handy list of #StormCiara facts for your water cooler chats today.
Here are three things to remember:
1. She’s fierce
It’s an Irish name meaning “little dark one”, but Storm Ciara is forecast to be a “vigorous Atlantic storm system with an expansive wind-field”.
“After a period of rather quiet weather, the change to unsettled mobile conditions will occur during Friday (7th Feb) as wet and windy weather moves in from the Atlantic.” said Met Éireann forecasters.
“A further spell of heavy rain is expected on Saturday (8th Feb) and this will be accompanied by strong and gusty winds with a possibility of Status Yellow warnings.
Weather conditions are expected to deteriorate further on Sunday (9th Feb) as Storm Ciara (named by the UK Met Office on Wednesday 5th February) tracks to the north of Ireland.”
2. Ciara is the third storm this season
Storm Ciara is the third named storm of the season after Brendan in January and Atiyah in December. Storms are named to aid the communication of approaching severe weather, helping the public to be prepared to keep themselves, their property and businesses safe.
PSA: anyone wondering, since it’s an Irish name, it’s pronounced ‘Key-ra’. Not ‘See-A-rah’, or ‘Ki-a-rah’. #StormCiara
— Dr Keith O’ Brien (@keithmobrien) February 5, 2020
3. Storm Ciara could cause flooding issues
The country will enter a period of spring tides this weekend. This will coincide with high seas, which are likely to affect coastal areas at first on Saturday but will continue into Sunday and the early days of next week.
“The combination of high Spring Tides and high seas, as well as extremely windy or stormy conditions later in the weekend and early next week, will result in an elevated risk of coastal flooding, especially along western and southern coasts.” said Met Éireann.
“The unsettled weather is likely to produce significant rainfall totals over the weekend. This will result in an increase in river levels and may cause some localised flooding.”
— Ciara Lawless (@lawbyname) February 5, 2020