Ireland’s highest August temperature in over 25 years recorded in Co Carlow

Dozens of areas at risk of drought as status yellow weather warning remains in place

Dozens of areas around the country are at risk of drought after the temperature reached its highest level for August in more than a quarter of a century on Thursday with further high temperatures expected in the coming days.

A spokesman for Met Éireann confirmed that the highest temperature of the day was 30.5 degrees at Oakpark, Co Carlow. That was the warmest August reading since 1995, when the mercury hit 31.5 degrees on what was the hottest August day on record.

Thursday was also the first time the temperature breached the 30 degree mark in August since 2003.

Met Éireann has issued a status yellow weather warning for high temperatures for the whole country, which will remain in place until 6am on Sunday. It said temperatures could again breach the 30 degree mark in a number of locations.


It warned of heat stress, especially for the more vulnerable of the population, as well as a high solar UV index, and the risk of water related incidents.

Irish Water said there are currently 24 areas impacted by shortages and at risk of drought. It has implemented a range of measures including tankering to protect supplies and ensure water keeps flowing to homes and businesses.

There are about 60 other areas around the country that are being “closely monitored” by Irish Water to ensure normal supply is maintained for the rest of the summer and into autumn.

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Irish Water imposed night time restrictions from 11pm-7am in a number of locations in Co Cork and Co Kerry on Thursday night, and said it may need to impose further restrictions over the coming nights as the system comes under more pressure.

During night time restrictions, no new water is pumped into the network servicing affected areas to prevent water shortages for homes and businesses during daytime hours.

Met Éireann said other notable temperatures on Thursday were at Moorepark, Co Cork (29.4 degrees); Mountdillon, Co Roscommon (27.9 degrees); while the highest temperatures in the capital were recorded at the Phoenix Park and Casement Aerodrome (27 degrees).

The Irish Coast Guard urged people to be cautious and to plan for their personal safety if swimming or spending time in and around water.

A man in his 30s drowned on Wednesday evening after getting into difficulty in the River Barrow in Carlow town. The father-of-one, named locally as Paddy Morris from Kilkea on the Kildare/Carlow border, got into difficulties shortly after entering the river close to the town park area in Graiguecullen.

Both a man and woman jumped into the river and pulled him out of the river. Emergency services arrived within minutes but despite desperate efforts to revive him he was pronounced dead at the scene.

ESB Networks said the electricity network is built and continually upgraded to withstand a heatwave such as this but “extreme weather such as significant high temperatures may have an effect on electricity cables and transformers”. There were no major incidents on Thursday.

However, the fire brigade was dealing with a number of fires in fields and woodlands across the country, and the National Parks and Wildlife Service appealed to the public to be conscious of the dangers posed by fire.

Minister of State for Heritage Malcolm Noonan said: “Don’t light fires or barbecues, keep access roads clear for emergency services, and if you’re camping, let someone know where you’ll be. There is a high risk of fire right now.”

Elsewhere, Inland Fisheries Ireland said there is a high risk of fish kills due to thermal stress and reduced oxygen levels in lakes and rivers. It appealed to anglers to stop using keep nets while temperature warnings are in place, and for “catch and release” anglers not to fish.

Irish Water said the areas impacted by drought are Lahinch, Ennistymon and Carron in Co Clare; Clonakility, Newmarket, Whitechurch, Roberts Cove and Coppeen in Co Cork; Inis Oirr in Co Galway; as well as Breanlee, Miltown, and Agahadoe in Co Kerry.

The other areas are Bennettsbridge and Clogh in Co Kilkenny; Swan in Co Laois; Doon and Oola in Co Limerick; Coalbrook, Dualla, and Kilcash in Co Tipperary; Wexford Town, Killmallock Bridge, Taylorstown and Askamore in Co Wexford; as well as Rathdrum and Kirikee in Co Wicklow.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns is a reporter for The Irish Times