Thick smoke was billowing in the sky after a wind turbine caught fire due to the raging thunderstorm and lightning battering Ireland today. The turbine, located in a windfarm approximately 10km off the coast of Arklow in the Irish Sea, is understood to have been struck by lightning at around 12pm. No one was injured in the fire.
GE Renewable Energy, the operator, confirmed the incident and stated that the root cause of the incident will be determined once weather conditions improve and staff can approach the scene.
A spokesperson for the company told Independent.ie: “An offshore wind turbine event has been reported on October 19, 2022, at the Arklow Bank Offshore Windfarm located in the Irish Sea.
“There were no injuries. The Coast Guard has been notified. Once weather conditions permit and we can access the site safely, we will start working to determine the root cause of this event.”
A spokesperson for the Irish Coast Guard confirmed that they had responded to reports of the fire.
The fire is said to have now been extinguished, with reports suggesting that there were no personnel on the 3.6-megawatt wind turbine when it was struck and that therefore there was no threat to life.
Arklow, some 80km from Dublin, was blasted today by heavy rain much like most of Ireland.
Ireland’s national meteorological service Met Éireann alerted people for intense showery rain affecting the north of Leinster and east Ulster with embedded thunderstorms.
The forecast also showed localised flooding and a chance of hail. It read: “Cloudier elsewhere with further bands of thundery rain pushing up from the south through the evening bringing lightning strikes.
“Very breezy and blustery with fresh to strong and gusty easterly winds and highest temperatures of 12 to 17 degrees.”
For tonight, Met Éireann predicted bands of showers will continue to track up over the north of the country early in the night with a continued risk of localised flooding.
The forecast continued: “Drier conditions with clear spells and isolated showers will push into the south early, extending to all areas later.
“Fresh to strong southeasterly winds will moderate overnight, remaining milder though with lowest temperatures of 9 to 13 degrees.”
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