Businesses may get compensation over flood defence works

THE Office of Public Works will be asked to compensate businesses in a Co Cork town which will suffer further disruption because defective concrete used in flood prevention works will have to be replaced.

Contractors working on the scheme in Fermoy have apologised after it was revealed by the Irish Examiner that a problem existed with “the durability of concrete” poured into a section of flood defences on the northern side of the town.

The issue of compensation is to be discussed at a meeting of Fermoy Town Council on July 20.

Labour councillors Noel McCarthy and Tadgh O’Donovan have put down a motion that the town council provide a rebate to businesses in the Brian Boru Square and Rathealy Road area which will be inconvenienced for at least a further month while the problem is rectified.

“Somebody has to be held responsible for the this. Businesses, especially in the Brian Boru Square area have had to put up with a lot of disruption already due to these flood prevention works,” said Mr McCarthy.

“We were told the work to replace the concrete would take an additional four weeks, but it could be even longer than that.”

Both councillors want the OPW to reimburse the town council for the rate rebate.

The town’s bridge, which crosses the River Blackwater, has been blighted by traffic restrictions since the works began in January as the first phase of the €33 million flood defences were put in place.

The major of Fermoy, Cllr Patrick O’Driscoll, has commended the contractors for admitting the problem and moving to rectify it.

The contractors said they will look at working long hours to complete the works quickly.

Last week, the OPW admitted that the contractor had discovered a problem with the durability of concrete used during construction of a section of flood defences.

The problem was spotted by contractors Carillion Irishenco during routine quality control tests.

More than 70 houses and businesses in the town have been affected by flooding over the years, most notably in Brian Boru Square.

Phase one of the flood relief project is currently underway on the northern side of the town.

The larger works, on the southern side, are expected to start early next year.


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