Sandbags at dawn for flood threat
Published 15/12/2012 | 05:00
DUBLIN's flood defences will remain in place over the weekend as more very high tides are expected.
The Coast Guard has urged people to avoid exposed coasts, cliffs, harbour walls and beaches.
Further gales and flooding is expected, however, winds will ease and it will become dryer over the weekend.
Local authorities in the east and south of the country were on high alert yesterday as low atmospheric pressure, high tides, heavy rain and onshore strong winds all combined to test flood defences.
Met Eireann said rainfall levels across the country varied from 10mm to 20mm, although parts of Cork saw as much as 35mm.
There was some flooding in Clontarf in Dublin, as well as in Cork and Waterford; however, it was not as bad as was feared.
While the threat of flooding remains over the weekend, a change in wind direction coupled with drier weather and a slight rise in pressure means it will not be as severe.
There was flooding along Clontarf's promenade and Marine Drive was closed for a number of hours as were car parks along the seafront.
However, a Dublin City Council spokesman said there was no significant damage to property.
Flood defences on the River Tolka will remain in place for the weekend and both the Liffey Boardwalk and the flood gates at Spencer Dock will remain closed. High tides over the weekend will be between 12am and 2am and again between 12pm and 2pm.
Floodwaters rose on several low-lying streets in the city centre, but did not enter buildings. Areas affected included South Terrace, Union Quay, Fr Matthew Quay and Lancaster Quay.
Cork city council remains on alert with further high tides forecast for just after 6.30am today and at 6.58pm and tomorrow at 7.25am and 7.45pm. It is advising householders and business owners to take precautionary measures to protect their properties.
The train station was flooded resulting in services between the city and Kilkenny and Carrick-on-Suir being suspended for a time and passengers having to be transferred by bus. The line later reopened.
Met Eireann said the coming days will be less cold than recently with daytime temperatures reaching normal December levels of seven to nine or 10 degrees. There will be patchy frosts at night, but these will not be as severe as earlier this week.
The midlands, east and south east of the country will be largely dry, although it will be showery in the west.
There will be a widespread severe frost on Monday morning and during Monday night and Tuesday morning and more heavy rain will spread across the country during the middle of next week.
Meanwhile, the Howth Coast Guard urged people to exercise extreme caution on exposed areas such as seafronts and harbour piers during the high tides.
The Coast Guard received a number of 999 calls about people endangering themselves by trying to take photographs close to breaking waves in Dublin.
"Survival of a fall into the sea is significantly shortened due to the recent very low temperatures. Even strong swimmers would struggle to deal with the effects of hypothermia if they need to swim back to shore," said a spokesperson.
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