The allegedly deliberate flooding of part of a housing estate which was already under threat of being flooded, was an act of ”mindless thuggery”, according to a couple living in Shannon Banks, Co Clare.
Brid and Denis Murphy, whose home lies adjacent to the in-flood River Shannon, criticised those who allegedly lifted up a hose pipe that had been feeding the river from overwhelmed drains in the estate, and pointed it towards local houses, after carrying it over an embankment.
The hose was taking a large volume of water via a pumping station installed by Clare County Council.
The incident occurred on Saturday night into Sunday morning between 12:45am-1.15am, locals said.
“This is mindless thuggery,” said Mr Murphy.
One of his neighbours noticed the deluge creeping in around his home at 6am and ran to reposition the hose back towards the river. The water had stopped just short of the man’s front door.
“The drains (in the in the estate) aren’t able to take the water. The council put in a pumping station to take the excess water from the drains and feed it back to the river, and it has been successful. But, the other night someone reversed the hose pipe and pointed it back towards the houses,” explained another local resident who did not wish to be identified.
Mr Murphy said: “I (presume) it was young fellas. It was the luck of God the man looked out and saw the water was all in his front yard. There is no way one single person could have done that.
That’s a tonne weight with the flow of water on the pipe, even the pressure of the pipe alone, you wouldn’t pull it back, you’d have to have two people pulling that back.
Another part of the housing estate was badly flooded in 2009, and an embankment was constructed afterwards to try to keep the floodwater at bay, which it has done for the past ten years.
There have been calls for anyone with CCTV cameras in the area to check for possible footage of those behind the incident.
Locals believe a number of youths seen on bicycles in the area at the time may have been involved.
When contacted, a garda spokesman they were not aware of the incident. Clare County Council were contacted for comment.