Saturday 29 April 2017

Heavy rain causes flooding chaos in Wicklow

Allison Bray

Allison Bray

RESIDENTS of Arklow in Co Wicklow are bracing themselves for more flooding tomorrow morning at high tide after continuous rain for more than 24 hours has left parts of the town under water.

Constant rain for the past 36 hours is causing heavy flooding in low-lying areas of the town, forcing dozens of residents and business-owners in the South Green and Tinahask areas on the south side of the town and the Worosboro Terrace estate to sandbag their premises.

“Everywhere is heavily flooded,” Arklow gardai said.

The main street of the town, the south quays and major routes in and out of the town, including the Dublin and Wexford roads are currently impassable.

The flooding has also led to huge tailbacks in the town and numerous single vehicle accidents as motorists slid off the road.

Gardai fear the worst is yet to come as the high tide hits the town at 3am tomorrow.

A local resident said the combined effect of the constant rain, coupled with high levels of water in the Avoca River, and the high tide makes could all combine to cause more serious flooding early tomorrow.

“The 19 arches bridge over the Avoca River is acting like a dam with wind blowing up the river holding it back,” he said.

Wicklow county council crews are placing sandbags in strategic locations and clearing away debris from drains, he added.

However the constant rain coupled with freezing temperatures and sporadic sleet and snow is making things more difficult.

Meanwhile, serious flooding is also causing havoc for some motorists and commuters in south county Dublin and beyond.

Flooding on the DART line at Sandycove in south Dublin has led to the cancellation of DART commuter trains between Dun Laoghaire and Dalkey from 3:45pm today.

Southbound motorists on the M50 motorway are also experiencing extremely long delays due to flooding on both the M11 and N11 at Bray, Co Wicklow.

An accident at Kilternan late in the afternoon led to the initial delays, however after the collision was cleared, motorists are still stuck in traffic for hours due to tailbacks as far back as Junction 14 at Leopardstown, according to AA Roadwatch.

Commuter trains between Dublin Connolly and Rosslare and Dublin Connolly and Gorey in Co Wexford have also been cancelled this evening due flooding at Sandycove, however bus transfers are available between the city centre and Bray, Co Wicklow.

Main routes in and out of Wicklow town are also impassable due to surface.

The deluge came as Met Eireann is warning of further heavy falls of snow affecting much of Ulster tonight and overnight with drifting in places. Sleet and snow showers are also falling over parts of north Leinster and north Connacht but are expected to die off over the course of the night.

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