Floods and ice road damage tops €20m

DAMAGE from floods and ice to roads in Cork county has been estimated at more than €20 million.

The county council has sent a damage inventory to the Department of Transport in the hope of securing necessary funding to complete repairs.

Some councillors are fearful the road network will deteriorate even further if central funding is not committed. At a meeting in Mallow yesterday, senior executive engineer Aidan Weir said around €8.2 million in damage was inflicted on roads in South Cork, a further €6.8 in North Cork and €5.5 million in West Cork.

Councillor Gerard Murphy (FG) said unless the Department of Transport provided serious money to maintain non-national roads the county’s road network would be in serious trouble later in the year. “The roads will soon be back to the state they were in the 1980s,”Mr Murphy said.

Cllr John Paul O’Shea (Ind) said many rural roads around North Cork were in a shocking state.

Cllr Noel McCarthy (Lab) said parts of the national secondary road between Mitchelstown and Mallow (N73) were particularly badly hit.

“There’s a bit of the road around Kildorrery which looks like a bomb hit it,” Cllr Kevin O’Keeffe (FF) said. The council has provided €1.6 million out of its own resources to deal with pothole repairs and drainage works in North Cork.

This year’s non-national roads grants are expected to be announced on February 22.

Mr Weir said if no extra money was forthcoming for the repair of rural roads it would pose “a very serious challenge” for the council as the year progresses.

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