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Polar Vortex sends giant 'black swell' to Europe

The polar vortex winter storms in the United States and low pressure systems in the Atlantic have caused historic storms in the UK, sending a "black swell," giant 60-foot waves, to the UK, Ireland and Portugal.

Polar Vortex send historic 60-foot Black Swell waves to Europe, possibly indicating future climate change extremes
NOAA, Surfer's Today

While nearly half of the United States face record-breaking low temperatures, the Old Continent readied for the worst hours of the last decade, at least, in coastal regions - well, "worst" except for surfers.

"Mullaghmore Head, in Sligo in the north-west of Ireland is reckoned to be the best spot in Europe at the moment for professional surfers," the BBC reports Tuesday in its article, Surfers flock to ride the 'black swell' in Ireland.

This historic swell is accompanied with heavy rain and winds in the 40-knot mark, according to Surfer's Today, possibly indicating extremes of climate change's impact in days to come.

The UK and Republic of Ireland have been in a state of high alert. A severe storm had already hit the British Islands, with severe flood warnings issued across the territory.

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) warned people to protect themselves from the swell and stay away from piers and coastal defenses.

Speaking about surfers, Tom Mansell, a divisional operations manager and flood rescue team leader, said, "They don't understand how dangerous the sea can be. We would say please, please keep away from this water."

Those warnings, however, had little impact on many surfers.

Shane Dorian quickly flew from the Hawaiian Islands, only stopping at Belharra, in the Southwest of France. Justine Dupont and Benjamin Sanchis were waiting for him, by the beach, Surfer's Today reported.

"Time to ride the giants."

Sources: BBC, Surfer's Today

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