Ophelia to cost between €500 and €800 million

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Storm Ophelia made landfall early Monday morning leaving three dead and hundreds of thousands without electricity. Gavin Hyland reports on the recovery operation from the worst storm to hit Ireland in half a century.

The cleanup from storm Ophelia has begun and early estimations expect the damage to cost between €500 and €800 million with hundreds of millions more lost in the shutdown.

Three people lost their lives in Monday’s storm which caused winds of over 100Km/h. Over 80,000 homes are without water with 216,000 homes and business without electricity.

The National Emergency Coordination Group provided updates throughout the day through the Chair of that group, Sean Hogan.

Ophelia image CG
Storm Ophelia caused rough sees around the country on Monday. Source: Irish Coast Guard

RTÉ ran continuous coverage from all over the country, while Met Eireann has been roundly praised for their accurate forecasting of the storm which allowed for planning and warnings days in advance.

Journalist, Alison O’Connor took to Twitter to praise some of the organisations involved as well as the government.

Alison O'C Tweet

Schools and colleges were closed on Monday, with schools remained closed on Tuesday. The Luas also remained closed on Tuesday as its depot in the Red Cow suffered some damage in the storm.

There were reports of at least five rescue operations from the Irish Coast Guard as people failed to heed the warning of authorities and the Taoiseach to remain indoors during the storm.

The National Emergency Coordination Group also reported several near misses involving emergency services personnel.

Videos and images on social media showed trees torn down, school roofs blown off and flooding in Galway, among other structural damage.

ESB has also been praised as over 100,000 people had their power restored Monday night and into Tuesday morning.

The National Emergency Coordination Group also announced that help is being brought in from Scotland and France to help restore power and water to those affected.

The good weather on Tuesday and Wednesday will help the recovery, but bad weather forecast for the weekend will likely delay or setback the recovery.

Storm Ophelia is the worst storm to hit Ireland in over 50 years and although the recovery has begun, it is likely to take days and cost hundreds of millions to return the country to full functionality.

 

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