Monday 11 December 2017

Hospital's flooded A&E remains shut as staff continue clean-up

Lyndsey Telford

THE emergency department at a Co Donegal hospital remains closed after serious flooding on Friday.

A major clean-up operation has been taking place at Letterkenny General Hospital in a bid to avoid the spread of infection.

 

Hospital staff, members of the fire brigade and gardai worked through the night to try to minimize damage caused.

 

The hospital was forced to declare an emergency situation after torrential rain flooded a number of different areas, leaving them damaged and soiled.

Flash flooding in Letterkenny General Hospital
Flash flooding in Letterkenny General Hospital

 

Emergency patients are being diverted to Sligo Regional Hospital and Altnagelvin Hospital.

 

Letterkenny is also closed to all visitors.

 

Areas worst hit by the flooding on Friday evening included the emergency department, the radiology, outpatients, pathology and medical records departments.

 

Several wards and kitchens were also flooded.

 

On Friday night, 11 patients from the emergency department had to be moved to day surgery.

 

The flooding, which occurred following heavy rain in parts of Donegal, caused a stream at the back of the hospital to become congested.

 

It flowed over onto the hospital grounds and eventually into the hospital.

 

Local authority fire services were called to pump the water from the building.

 

General manager at the hospital Sean Murphy said on Friday it had been "a very difficult situation".

 

He thanked hospital staff, the fire service, the council, the army and the gardai for their help in trying to manage it.

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