'Gazebos flying, a good lot of damage done' by Storm Ali at Ploughing says site manager

Michelle Hogan

Reporter:

Michelle Hogan

"Gazebos flying, a good lot of damage done," by Storm Ali at Ploughing says site manager

Picture: @NPAIE

A site manager at the National Ploughing Championships has said that 'a good lot of damage' has been done inside the Offaly site where thousands of people were waiting to get in on Wednesday morning.

Cllr John Moran has been site manager of the ploughing for a number of years.

"There has been a good lot of damage done inside, gazebos flying, we don't know until it dies down, it hasn't died down yet there are still gusts, tents are all blown away, the big ones are okay," Mr Moran said.

The organisers of the National Ploughing Championships have put off opening the event in Offaly 'until further notice'as Storm Ali continues to affect the county.

An orange warning from Met Éireann for wind remains in place until 1pm in Offaly and 16 other counties. The opening of the event had been pushed back to 11am, but now organisers have extended the delay.

In a statement, they said, "Storm Ali peaked an hour and a half later than expected here on site, and as safety is of the utmost importance we will have to delay opening the gates to visitors until further notice."

"We greatly appreciate your understanding and patience on this matter and will keep you informed of any updates," they added.

Thousands of people have already travelled to the site from all over the country. Storm Ali has already brought down a number of trees in Offaly, including one on a car near Clara where a person sustained minor injuries. 

Tree falls onto car as crowds head to Ploughing 2018.

Laois fire service clearing fallen trees as Storm Ali hits.