Statement from the National Emergency Coordination Group on Severe Weather

October 2, 2019 0

A National Emergency Coordination Group meeting was held on Tuesday 1st October, chaired by Minister Eoghan Murphy. Ministers Paul Kehoe and Minister Damien English were in attendance also. Met Éireann current forecasts indicate that Storm Lorenzo will move across the country during Thursday night into Friday morning, moving West to East across the country, potentially bringing strong winds, rain and the threat of coastal flooding. 

Report of the National Emergency Coordination Group meeting

hurricane_lorenzoThe National Emergency Coordination Group met today in anticipation of the arrival of Strom Lorenzo. The Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government is designated as the Lead Government Department for coordinating the response to severe weather emergencies at national level. The Department’s National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management (NDFEM) Crisis Management Team has been meeting daily and working with Met Éireann, local authorities and other Government Departments and agencies since Friday 27 September to review information regarding the storm and its predicted trajectory and intensity.

The NDFEM contacted all local authorities on Monday 30 September advising them to activate their severe weather assessment teams and Local Coordination arrangements.

  • Local Authorities, who are the lead agency for the response to severe weather have activated their Crisis Management Teams and Local Coordination Groups in preparation for the arrival of Storm Lorenzo.
  • Department of Transport and Sport have activated Crisis Weather Plans, with TII crews ready and on standby to deal with any potential difficulties posed by Storm Lorenzo. RSA media campaign for driving in difficult conditions has commenced.
  • ESB Networks have taken action and are ready to mobilise responses to restore power once the impact of the storm is known.  Powercheck app will enable users to gather updates on estimated restoration times. Safety regarding fallen lines will be communicated also.
  • HSE have activated Crisis Management Teams and have issued messages to service users and staff to minimise any potential impact on services.
  • Irish Water have activated Crisis Management Teams, arrangements are in place to minimise any possible disruption to water supplies as a result of Storm Lorenzo.
  • Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection are on standby with their Community Welfare Officers ready to assist with damage and recovery due to the impacts of the storm.
  • The Department of Housing Planning and Local Government have put preparations in place and  are in contact with all local authorities and are providing additional beds in outreach centres for rough sleepers in preparation.
  • Defence Forces troops are on standby and available to assist in the response if and when required.
  • Civil Defence personnel are on standby to assist where required.

Key Public Safety & Information Messages

  • More detailed Public Safety Messaging will issue tomorrow morning and throughout Wednesday and Thursday.
  • People are advised to monitor news and other local sources of information.
  • In areas affected it is likely there will be:
    • High seas; the public are advised to stay away from coastal areas during this period.
    • Very strong winds are predicted which will make driving conditions hazardous, especially for the more vulnerable road users, e.g., cyclists, pedestrian’s, motorcyclist and high sided vehicles. Road users should pay particular attention to the risk posed by fallen trees and flying debris as trees are in full leaf.

The public are again reminded to monitor Met Éireann forecasts for their area and to be aware of the weather conditions and to heed safety warnings. Information is available across social media platforms and other traditional media sources.

The National Emergency Coordination Group is monitoring the situation and will meet again tomorrow, 02 October at 10.30am to review the developing situation.

Check out some photos from Balbriggan Harbour on Tuesday 1st October or track the storm here