Evelyn Cusack of Met Éireann at the National Emergency Coordination Centre today.
The National Emergency Coordination Committee has met to make preparations for Hurricane Ophelia as the Red alert weather warning extended to two more counties.
Met Éireann has told the Committee that it expects the eye of the storm may hit the south coast and then track up along the west coast.
Wexford and Waterford were added to list of counties now set to feel the worst impact of the storm which is due to hit Monday morning. Met Éireann says it is monitoring the situation and will update its weather warnings if required.
Chair of the National Emergency Coordination Centre Sean Hogan has said everyone needs to take heed of what is coming with public safety is of primary concern.
He advised people in counties with an Orange weather warning which covers Laois, to take great care.
He said that people should not expose themselves to danger when when they don't need to be out.
A status red weather warning has been issued by Met Éireann - its highest warning - for Galway, Mayo, Clare, Cork, Wexford and Waterford.
The warning is due to come into effect at 9am Monday morning.
A status orange warning is in place for the rest of the country INCLUDING LAOIS.
LAOIS ON STANDBY FOR OPHELIA More details here
Evelyn Cusack said Met Éireann said only 15 storms of this nature have ever been reported within 200 nautical miles of Ireland.
The storm will last three to six hours in any given area.
People working for the emergency services should plan their arrival and departure from work.
The ESB is escalating preparedness for power cutsand have urged the public to stay clear of fallen cables .
The Department of Education say schools "should consider not opening where a Status Red weather warning related to wind is forecast.
OPHELIA TAKING AIM AT IRELAND More details here