Parts of Ireland get three times usual rainfall

Parts of the country suffered three times more rain than usual last month sparking some of the worst floods in living memory, forecasters said today.

As flood-weary homeowners count the cost, Met Eireann said its stations recorded more than twice the average amount of rain dumped across the country.

Atlantic storms swept in pushing rainfall totals to the highest on record, including Malin Head and Valentia which have been monitoring figures for the last 100 years.

Rain or showers were recorded on almost every day, with between 22 and 27 wetdays compared with the normal range for November of between 13 and 20.

Heaviest daily falls at most stations were recorded on the 1st, but also between the 16th to 19th, and on the 29th.

Connacht and Munster experienced deluges of 10mm on many days, causing river levels to reach record highs in many parts of the midlands, west and south.

Cork Airport recorded the country’s highest daily rainfall on November 19 at 51.2mm, the worst at the southern station in 18 years and just before the ESB was forced to open Iniscarra dam and the already swollen River Lee flooded.

Valentia weather station’s monthly total of 360mm was its highest of any since records began in the area in 1866.

Its previous highest total for the year of 1,923mm in 2002 was also passed during the last week of the water-logged month.

But despite the devastating floods, record levels of rain, hail storms, battering winds and even a tornado, bizarrely we basked in more sun than usual.

Forecasters said sunshine levels for the month were above normal despite rain almost every day.

The north in particular enjoyed brighter than expected conditions – one of the few areas to largely escape the mid-month downpours.

But Cork, one of the worst hit by the flood waters, had the highest amount of sunshine in the month, with the city’s airport clocking up 80 hours.

Winds were above normal everywhere and were the highest for November for over 20 years in the south and south-west.

Even a tornado was seen at Ballymahon, Co Longford, on the 12th.

Much of November was mild with little or no frost, but temperatures plummeted in the last few days.

Casement Aerodrome enjoyed the highest temperature on November 21 at 15 Celsius, while the lowest was in Claremorris, Co Mayo on Saturday at -2.9 Celsius.

It’s a mixed bag for the first few days of December, with Met Eireann forecasting bright spells interspersed with showers and a risk of hail and thunder.

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