What’s an ex-Ophelia?

The Met Office have already hoisted south cones for next Monday when ex-hurricane Ophelia takes a swipe at this green and pleasant land, and have issued a very advanced yellow warning for strong winds for all western areas. It’s obviously not proper meteorological etiquette to mention the H word in the warning itself, so instead of referring to the H feature as ex-hurricane Ophelia, which might give people entirely the wrong idea, they’ve opted to call it ex-Ophelia, whatever that is. Perhaps a sex change to storm Brian will sort everything out, but I doubt it, half the population won’t know what the hell is coming, is it Ophelia, ex-Ophelia, Brian or even Corvin if that’s whatever the adopt-a-vortex scheme decide to call it.  Interestingly they have decided to use the old gusts 50 to 60, and possibly 70 to 80 mph in exposed places ploy, so indirectly they are forecasting possible gusts to hurricane force 12 (64 knots or 73.65 mph) on Monday.

Figure 1 – Courtesy of the Met Office

Author: xmetman

An ex-metman passionate about all things to do with weather, climate and clouds

6 thoughts on “What’s an ex-Ophelia?”

  1. I notice that the UKMO now have a yellow rain warning for rain in Cumbria today and tomorrow (very localised) and have changed the wind warning on Tuesday to cover only the northern part of England, including the East coast and S. Scotland.

  2. Too early, and they have a rather odd attitude to the naming of ‘storms’.

    This is already a memorable event and it hasn’t even happened yet!

    Can you remember storm Clodagh which occurred on the 29th of November 2015?

    Of course you can’t.


    Because it was completely forgettable, unless it blew a tree down and it landed on your car or house.

    An ex-hurricane running up the west coast of Ireland exactly thirty years TO THE DAY after the ‘great’ storm of 1987, come on for God’s sake just name it Brian (!) and be done with it!

    The thing is I like most other people will still recall it as Ophelia.

  3. They have to commit sooner or later, and this sounds a bit like a lecture from the Michael Fish School of Weather Forecasting on what the exact definition of a hurricane is.

    Forecaster Berg at the NHC puts it in a nutshell when he says: “…strong winds are becoming increasingly likely over portions of Ireland and United Kingdom regardless of the cyclone’s exact intensity”.

  4. This is from the news section of MET eireann, it sounds reasonable to me: There has been some media coverage that hurricane Ophelia will impact Ireland to some degree at the start of next week. At this stage, there is strong evidence from the weather forecast models that its remnants will track close to or even over parts of Ireland, but at present, there are still a wide spread of possible outcomes. Our forecasters are treating the situation with caution and are in contact with our international colleagues, but given the lead time and the inherent uncertainties that come with the modelling of a tropical system it won’t be possible to quantify the exact timing, nor the strength or intensity of the wind and rain, in any great detail until later in the weekend. Ophelia won’t be a hurricane in meteorological terms when it reaches our part of the world as she will have moved over the cooler waters of the mid-Atlantic and undergone what is known as extra-tropical transition. So while there could be the threat of wind gusts reaching hurricane force or indeed heavy rainfall with this system, it means the traditional attributes of a hurricane – such as an eye or an eye-wall containing a core of hurricane force winds – are very unlikely to be present. Instead, it will likely engage and merge with a frontal zone in the Atlantic, morphing into a mid-latitude depression with tropical characteristics. Met Éireann forecasters will be keeping a close eye on the evolution of this storm over the coming days and warnings will be issued as confidence in the evolution allows.

  5. I am slightly surprised that the Irish Met. Office hasn’t declared it a named storm.
    Or is it too early?

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