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Despite the exceptionally high levels of rainfall, it is totally unacceptable that major flooding occurs and that local, regional and national roads are rendered impassable.
Business and commerce are forced to a standstill.
While the OPW has a regionalised network of engineering offices throughout the country and is quite familiar with many flood prone areas, it does not have the resources to have a detailed knowledge of every flooding problem in the country. Under the aegis of an interdepartmental committee it is intended that the OPW will begin a process of flood event mapping, which will involve, as a first step, the gathering of information related to recorded instances of flooding.
For this purpose it is envisaged that the involvement of local authorities which are most familiar with flooding, within each of their areas, will be required. It is intended to circulate all local authorities and to request historical data, about the extent and frequency of flooding in their areas with a view to compiling and publishing this information in a uniform way.
What I would like to see incorporated in this report is a flood risk map of the country. From proposed reports, I turn to the urgent need for funding to prevent a recurrence of serious flooding in different parts of East Cork and beyond. Like many other areas; East Cork suffered severe damage from flooded roads caused by lack of adequate drainage. This should not be allowed to continue. Many of the minor and regional roads in East Cork are now in such a bad state of repair — that I fear they could collapse.
All roads are in need of proper surfacing. The only funding available is for remedial works. Due to the danger and urgency of the situation, I appeal to the DOE and OPW to make major capital available for the road works and adequate road drainage for regional and minor roads in all of Co Cork, especially East Cork, where the situation could not be worse.
There is need also to recruit additional road workers, but not and until the Minister for the Environment lifts the embargo on the recruitment of additional staff can the latter be resolved.
Over to the Minister to come to our aid.
Cllr Noel Collins
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