Winds of up to 72mph (117km/h) pounded Ireland overnight leaving up to 6,000 without power and disrupting morning commutes as emergency services were inundated with reports of fallen trees and blocked roads. The country was placed on orange alert as the storm struck at just below hurricane force.

At Roche’s Point, in Cork, gusts hit up to 63 knots, just one know off hurricane force on the Beaufort Scale.

The worst of the rain was in the southwest. At Roche’s Point they recorded 1.6" of rainfall, while elsewhere it ranged from between 1 and 1.5 inches.

The police in Cork described the rain as “torrential.”

A spokesperson said “Thankfully, people seem to have heeded all the warnings and stayed inside. There's not many people out and the roads are relatively quiet. There hasn't been any reports of anyone in distress.”

Monday morning commutes were badly disrupted. The AA Roadwatch reports that there was heavy flooding in Dublin, along the Liffey, especially at Bachelors Walk. The northside DART service along with other train services were also shut down for the morning commute. The A1 Newry to Belfast Road was closed in both directions. There were also major disruptions reported in the southwest.

Siobhan Ryan, forecaster at Ireland meteorological center, Met Eireann told the Irish Independent the storm dissipated at 6am this morning (Irish time).

She said, “The winds have moderated already.

“It’s still pretty windy in north east coasts, but they’ll moderate everywhere else.”

She added that there was a high risk of thunder across Ireland for the rest of the day.

She said, “There will be widespread heavy showers during the day – the Atlantic counties will bear the brunt, that’s the west, northwest, southwest and Ulster.”

There was one group of people who were delighted with the high winds – the surf community.

Bundoran in County Donegal was particularly busy on Sunday. Conditions were described as “absolutely epic.”

Owner of TurfnSurf Lodge and Surf School Killian O'Kelly told the Independent, “I have met people who have traveled from Waterford to come surfing in Bundoran. We have had loads of people up from Dublin for the weekend and this is just as good as it gets really for the Donegal-Sligo region. We're laughing all the way.”

Country placed under orange alert as storm hits just below hurricane force.Getty Images/iStockphoto