Met Éireann last night issued a yellow rainfall warning for Cork and Kerry, saying rain was expected today and overnight, but should turn more showery during Saturday morning.
It said 25mm-35mm were expected, with possibly higher totals on mountains. The warning is in place from 9am this morning until 9am tomorrow morning.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny and a number of other ministers wre scheduled to meet at 9am this morning with the Government’s National Coordination Group (NCG) to discuss what further steps are required.
Mr Kenny toured inundated areas along the Shannon basin and further south in Co Cork from the air and on the back of a tractor. He defended the Government’s handling of the crisis, dismissing criticism from Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin for not going out to affected areas earlier.
Multiple weather warnings issued, please see https://t.co/QtEBJHeCVa for further information.— Met Éireann (@MetEireann) December 29, 2015
“I have had daily briefings from the co-ordination committee. I am in constant contact with the relevant ministers. There have been many visits by ministers,” the taoiseach said.
Meanwhile, the NCG said significant rises in the Shannon and catchment levels over the last 48 hours meant flood defence efforts in a number of locations would continue “for some time yet” and that surface water/“pluvial” flooding on the road network would remain for the next few days.
It said the upper catchment at Carrick-on-Shannon had risen by 13cm; the mid catchment Athlone area had risen by approximately 7cm in the last 48 hours and was 10cm above its peak of December 16; and the lower catchment at Lough Derg had risen by up to 9cm and Limerick City by approximately 11cm in the past 48 hours.
The NCG said Lough Derg water levels could reach those of 2009 in the coming days and, as a result, the flow through Parteen Weir could increase to 2009 levels of up to 500 cubic metres per second.
“This level of water flow will have increased associated flooding to land and property in the vicinity of the Shannon downstream of Parteen Weir including the areas of Springfield, Montpelier, Castleconnell, Mountshannon (Annacotty) and the University of Limerick. Other areas between Parteen Weir and Limerick may also be vulnerable to flooding due to local issues.”
ESB Networks crews battled to restore power yesterday to as many of the 1,700 customers who were without power overnight, as possible. A further 1,200 customers in Fermoy lost power yesterday morning.
ESB said many of the customers who had lost power were in areas where there was extensive flooding and that this was hampering repairs.
“Where premises are flooded, it may take a number of days to re-connect customers and only when it is safe to do so,” it said.
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