Fine Gael's deputy director of elections Frank Flannery has said that if this morning's Millward Brown Lansdowne exit poll is accurate the election will mark an historic occasion.
The party recorded 36.1% support – its highest result since November 1982 - according to the study commissioned by RTÉ.
Labour, which hopes to be in coalition with Fine Gael, is on 20.5%, its best ever share of the vote.
Fianna Fáil is on a record low of 15.1%.
“From my party’s perspective we will be far and away the biggest party in the Dáil for the first time ever,” he said.
“It’s a pretty disastrous poll from Fianna Fáil’s point of view.”
He told RTÉ Radio Fianna Fáil could have a “dramatically horrific election”.
Fianna Fáil’s director of elections Tony Killeen said the polls signalled a massive volatility in the electorate never seen before.
“It is a worrying time and obviously for my own colleagues in Fianna Fáil there will be excellent TDs and candidates who’ll be beaten on this result,” he said.
But he denied it could be the end of Fianna Fáil as a movement.