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Storm Emma - how bad was it?

  • 20-05-2018 9:27pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 4,044 ✭✭✭ arctictree


    Now, a few months after the event, is there a consensus on how bad storm emma was? Seemed to me like a once in a generation event. Thoughts?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,364 ✭✭✭ highdef


    North Kildare, local roads covered in 2 metres deep of snow from one side of the road to the other (hedgerow to hedgerow), drifts over 4 metres deep. Could not travel by car until local farmers cleared the roads after 4 days. Would I like it again.... Hell yes!

    Local road shown in the attached photo, you can just sit see the tops of the hedgerows poking through at the sides.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,665 ✭✭✭✭ JCX BXC


    While I heard alot of blah blah blah saying it was completely overhyped, we were effectively housebound all of Saturday, and you weren't moving for most of Sunday either without a 4 wheel drive. West Clare.

    Rare to be housebound for more than a few hours in Irish weather.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,974 ✭✭✭ Chris_5339762


    Certainly worse than 2010 for me.

    Whereas 2010 was well aimed streamers from the Irish sea it is extremely rare that a huge windstorm would interact with extremely cold air coming in from the east. Even the track of Emma was weird. To get those two things happening again like that would be rare.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,044 ✭✭✭ arctictree


    What really got me here (east wicklow) was the intense cold before the snow. I remember one night was -4c with a gale force easterly blowing. Everything in our lambing shed was freezing, even the medicines in the cabinet. The ink froze in a printer in the farm office. The snow then blocked access up our road for 5 days, even by tractor.

    Also, it's quite rare for any storm to provide continous precipitation for 2 days, for that to be snow would even be rarer.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭ mickger844posts


    arctictree wrote: »
    What really got me here (east wicklow) was the intense cold before the snow. I remember one night was -4c with a gale force easterly blowing. Everything in our lambing shed was freezing, even the medicines in the cabinet. The ink froze in a printer in the farm office. The snow then blocked access up our road for 5 days, even by tractor.

    Also, it's quite rare for any storm to provide continous precipitation for 2 days, for that to be snow would even be rarer.

    Same here in Waterford City where we had continuous snow for the best part of 2 days. Huge drifts all over the place and the memory of people walking in the middle of the road just like the Day after tomorrow movie. We may never see the likes of it again but maybe we will, only time will tell.


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 172 ✭✭ Jimmy Dags


    Some snow, wind etc didn’t mind it. Gave few days in bed with herself how bad.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,446 ✭✭✭ pad199207


    I think anybody in North Kildare who hears of Storm emma being mentioned would shiver.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,023 ✭✭✭ Donegal Storm


    Also in North Kildare, it snowed non-stop from around 6pm Wednesday (and that was with about 7-8cm already on the ground from Tuesday night) right through to Friday night / Saturday morning, maybe it briefly stopped overnight but during daylight hours at least there wasn't a single minute where it wasn't snowing in that ~60 hour period.

    The entire area shut down from Thursday to Sunday and I only got my car out the following Wednesday. The novelty wore off eventually but it was probably the single most memorable weather event I've ever experienced. Not something I'd like to see regularly but I'd still be just as excited if it were to happen again :D

    Main road near the house, click for full size..

    20180302_153728.jpg


  • Registered Users Posts: 33,549 ✭✭✭✭ RobertKK


    The snow had drifted higher than the ditches here on the hill of North Kilkenny. The council had to bring in diggers on the Monday to open our road and it took them many hours just to open a small stretch of it.
    While the snow went relatively quickly on the low ground, around my area the snow was still in the ditches two weeks later.
    The pressure of the snow drifts broke stakes that fenced fields, bent metal staples that was holding wire onto the fences.
    The snow event of 2010 and the one we had this year are totally different event, 2010 had severe cold and a long snow event with a partial thaw in the middle before it resumed.
    2018 was a snow storm with strong winds that caused massive drifting, it was cold and there were days here that didn't get above freezing, but not the cold of 2010, plus it was shorter lived.
    Each event will be remembered in their own right, one was the coldest and snowiest December on record. The other the biggest snow event this century.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,306 ✭✭✭ SleetAndSnow


    Most snow we had in years here in Cork City, since around the early 2000's id say (didn't get much in 2010). Most of it seemed to be from streamers however, as Storm Emma seemed to just miss us even though it was meant to hit us here :)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 135 ✭✭ bodun


    If it hadn't been so cold already, what would Emma have been like on her own, as a normal winter storm say?


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,364 ✭✭✭ highdef


    bodun wrote: »
    If it hadn't been so cold already, what would Emma have been like on her own, as a normal winter storm say?
    Very very miserable.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,796 ✭✭✭✭ hatrickpatrick


    The upper level of Dun Laoghaire pier is still almost entirely closed to the public due to storm damage. The pier has stood for at least a hundred years (anyone know when it was built) and has never to my knowledge been damaged badly enough by a storm as to actually be closed for walking.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,364 ✭✭✭ highdef


    The upper level of Dun Laoghaire pier is still almost entirely closed to the public due to storm damage. The pier has stood for at least a hundred years (anyone know when it was built) and has never to my knowledge been damaged badly enough by a storm as to actually be closed for walking.
    Was this as a direct result of Storm Emma?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,071 ✭✭✭ PukkaStukka


    I live in Donabate In North county Dublin. Compared to other areas, I think it's fair to say that we go off very lightly in comparison to most other areas and the anecdotes here bear that up. We had the same gales, bread shortages (:P) and two days of constant precipitation as everyone else, but being that bit closer to the sea meant that the precipitation was more benign. We had a later transition to full snow than everyone else and an earlier transition back to rain. I actually think the majority of the precipitation fell as wet snow which resulted In lower depths and accumulations. Max recorded depth for the event was about 8" in old money.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,796 ✭✭✭✭ hatrickpatrick


    highdef wrote: »
    Was this as a direct result of Storm Emma?

    Indeed. The pier was perfectly fine the week before the storm, and the week after it had broken glass all over the place from the roof of the bandstand, as well as massive chunks of rock (granite I presume?) having been ripped up from the floor and wall. I've never seen that kind of damage on Dun Laoghaire pier before.

    I do wonder though if maybe Hurricane Ophelia had already loosened it up / damaged parts of the structure "under the hood" if you like, with the result that Emma had an easier time causing the directly visible surface damage?

    The Dun Laoghaire area seems to have been hit with some of the stronger winds during Ophelia, possibly up to Category 1 hurricane force - for instance, I know trees were felled all over the country but in Dun Laoghaire they were toppled with enough force to fully flatten sections of brick and stone walls in their way. As in, fully clearing a gap from the top of the wall to the ground as they fell. I've seen trees downed by storms before, but never with that kind of strength.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,159 ✭✭✭✭ Sleeper12


    Dublin 5 didn't get it bad. 2010 was much worse & 1982 is still way the worst of my lifetime.

    I did think the the red warnings were the correct thing to do


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,825 ✭✭✭ LirW


    The whole snow damaged the roads badly here in the very South-West of Co. Wicklow. After the cold and frost was gone and the snow melted away the roads were sprinkled in potholes, some of them in the middle of the road and so massive that you can easily destroy your wheels with it when you're not driving a jeep.
    The potholes are a problem until that very day because the council doesn't fill them in properly and just pours gravel in it, sometimes they fix the top in place but they're open within a weeks time again.

    Beside that I had my sister over, she arrived before the snow and we were housebound for 2 days straight and only got the road cleared on the evening of day 2 so you couldn't head out really, only in a 4x4.
    It was crap to be honest and while I come from a country with harsh winters, they're prepared there. I've never seen a chaos like that snow created.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,288 mickmackey1


    I wouldn't call it a 'storm' at all, don't think the winds rose above the level of a strong breeze here. The duration of the falling snow was something else though, even if it was of a fine, dusty type rather than proper flakes.


  • Registered Users Posts: 33,549 ✭✭✭✭ RobertKK


    https://twitter.com/kilkenny_met/status/999389541654986752?s=21

    That was at my location. It was like that all day and the road hours later eventually had huge drifts formed.


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  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 15,179 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Gonzo


    Dunshaughlin got it quite bad, but I think the drifting made it deeper than it seemed. We missed most of the showers from the Beast From The East and relied on Emma for the majority of the snowfall. Overall we ended up with about half the amount of snow as Kildare, Wicklow and Wexford.

    I reckon 2010 had deeper 'level' snow than 2018 and 1982 was much worse.

    2010 is still my favorite snow event for the length of time it lasted and the sheer amount of snow that fell... If 2010 had blizzard like conditions, then it could've turned into something far more severe than 1982.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,576 patneve2


    The combination of very fine but moderate/heavy snow and +100 km hr E gusts coming in straight off the sea on the first night of the storm was something else. Easily the poorest conditions I have ever witnessed at this location (Dalkey 40m asl near the coast). However, the wettish nature of the snow (and, possibly salt spray from the sea??) combined with some slight thaws when the ppn was lighter didn't really help my snow totals. About 17/18cm on average (very hard to measure...depths varied a lot) with +1ft drifts in spots was on the ground at the end of the event but if you take into account all the slight thaws and compacting of snow I'd say 25cm fell over that 24 hr period. More just even 800 metres-1km inland from here. Overall an amazing event - especially the chunky flake snow event on the afternoon of the second day. Wasn't alive in 1982 but looking at reanalysis charts etc. it looks like that event saw a better low pressure - cold air interaction (and obviously lower solar radiation being january) resulting in lower dew points and therefore greater accumulations on the coast but I'll leave that debate for the people who actually witnessed both events. No idea about the 1962 new years storm but Casement's record depth was recorded after that winter storm...anyone old enough to remember?


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,969 ✭✭✭ irishrover99


    I'm glad people are realizing that the bad weather came mainly from storm Emma.
    I've seen a lot of people out there thinking that it was all down to the so called beast from the east when in reality, if storm Emma hadn't combined with the cold front,the beast wouldn't have been all that bad.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,629 ✭✭✭ Elmer Blooker


    Three months on and I still can't figure out why I got so little snow.
    Dublin Airport (my nearest "official" readings) received 34mm in the three day period Feb 28-Mar 2 but all I got was snizzle and a lot less snow than Dec 2010.
    How bad was Emma? In my opinion it was a useless slushfest, a snap rather than a cold spell.
    But obviously IMBYism is unavoidable in a thread like this and I am fully aware that those in places like Kildare and Meath would 100% disagree with me.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,685 Mobhi1


    Dublin Airport would probably be my nearest official site too. Or possibly Phoenix Park on the other side. We didn't get quite as much as I thought we would but we still got about 20 odd centimetres.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,200 ✭✭✭ Gaoth Laidir


    I live in Donabate In North county Dublin. Compared to other areas, I think it's fair to say that we go off very lightly in comparison to most other areas and the anecdotes here bear that up. We had the same gales, bread shortages (:P) and two days of constant precipitation as everyone else, but being that bit closer to the sea meant that the precipitation was more benign. We had a later transition to full snow than everyone else and an earlier transition back to rain. I actually think the majority of the precipitation fell as wet snow which resulted In lower depths and accumulations. Max recorded depth for the event was about 8" in old money.

    I was on Donabate beach on Saturday and I noticed that the dunes at the back of the beach (along Corballis golf course) had been eroded and extended further out onto the beach in the form of a flat ledge. I think I'd been there once before since Emma, but I didn't cop it then so it may or may not have already been like that.

    Have you noticed it? Did it happen during Emma?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,071 ✭✭✭ PukkaStukka


    I live in Donabate In North county Dublin. Compared to other areas, I think it's fair to say that we go off very lightly in comparison to most other areas and the anecdotes here bear that up. We had the same gales, bread shortages (:P) and two days of constant precipitation as everyone else, but being that bit closer to the sea meant that the precipitation was more benign. We had a later transition to full snow than everyone else and an earlier transition back to rain. I actually think the majority of the precipitation fell as wet snow which resulted In lower depths and accumulations. Max recorded depth for the event was about 8" in old money.

    I was on Donabate beach on Saturday and I noticed that the dunes at the back of the beach (along Corballis golf course) had been eroded and extended further out onto the beach in the form of a flat ledge. I think I'd been there once before since Emma, but I didn't cop it then so it may or may not have already been like that.

    Have you noticed it? Did it happen during Emma?

    Should've dropped in for a cuppa, shouldn't you :p

    I live closer to Portrane beach than Corballis, but since the winter weather events of 2009, the dunes there have been utterly decimated to a jaw dropping extent. Dunes that were as high as houses have been eroded and the sea has encroached approximately 50ft inwards since then. One house is precariously placed atop of a now crumbling dune and I understand the householder has been served with notice to quit by the council. Storm Emma was spelt the death knell there but that event has spurred the relevant bodies into action to devise a plan to protect dunes, habitats and homes alike. Not before time though.

    I'll try find out what's happening in Corballis. You may be right that the state of the dune is down to Storm Emma. But as there are not many houses nearby and none would be under threat from dune collapse or flooding, it wouldn't be on our local radar as such.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,409 ✭✭✭ Jpmarn


    Storm Emma didn't have a big impact on me in Co. Limerick. The so called beast from the East was a culmination of a bad and a very long winter and the effects of farmers throughout the country. I must admit the farm press was full up of damaged sheds along the eastern side of the country particularly in Co. Wexford. For us farmers winter had set in around the time of Storm Ophelia. Autumn came in rather early around late July. From then the weather weather was cool and wet. The winter months were very wet but not that terribly cold. March was much colder than normal with a couple of attacks from the east with blasting cold air which badly stunted grass growth. It wasn't until the first week of April, around six weeks ago did winter lose its grip on us. For the month of April as the weather improved fields were very wet and whatever grass was there coul not be grazed. It seriously ran down fodder stocks on most farms and a lot of us was forced to buy imported fodder mainly from England. It looks like Summer has arrived early and I hope it is here for the long haul.


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