Fight to save homes from flood waters

Emergency services had to be called to an estate in Ballinamore on Monday night to save an number of homes threatened by rising flood waters.

Emergency services had to be called to an estate in Ballinamore on Monday night to save an number of homes threatened by rising flood waters.

The flooding arose after heavy rain caused a nearby drain to back-up and overflow onto the Willowfield Road. Thirty minutes later the water flowed into Dun Na Bo estate.

The speed at which the water rose meant that a number of home owners were unable to make preparations against the flood and the fire service had to be called at around 8pm to prevent at least one home from being severely flooded and other homes from being damaged.

Cllr Gordon Hughes described the situation as “quite serious” and said one home was “very lucky” to escape. He said without the swift response from Council Engineer, Shay O’Connor and the Ballinamore Fire Service “at least one home would have been flooded”.

The Fire Brigade put a barrier outside the most threatened home and were pumping water out of the estate from 9pm until after midnight. Cllr Hughes said if the water had risen at 2am, there would have been no way to prevent extensive flood damage in the estate where a number of elderly people reside.

Cllr Hughes said the estate is not under the control of the local authority and is in “limbo land”. He is meeting with Council officials later this week to seek a solution for the estate which also had flood issues in 2009.

Other areas of the county have also been impacted by flooding with AA Roadwatch issuing a warning about the Ballyconnell/Ballinamore Road (R205) which was flooded yesterday (Tuesday) morning. An elderly man also had to be evacuated from his home close to Ballyconnell on Monday night. And, businesses and residents in Leitrim Village and Carrick-on-Shannon are bracing themselves for further flooding in the coming days.

Dave Carthy, owner of Carthy’s Bar Lock 17 in Leitrim Village said all he can do is “wait and watch” as floodwaters rise near his business.

“It all depends on what happens in the next few days with the weather. I think that we are a lot better prepared this time (than in 2009) and we are watching the situation closely,” he told our reporter.

Mr Carthy, his family, staff and friends battled for weeks to keep floodwaters out four years ago.

“Those few weeks were just so stressful.I kept the floodwaters out to try and save my insurance but even though we didn’t get flooded the insurance company said we were in a flood plain and wouldn’t renew our policy,” he admitted.

More News

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.