Monday 22 April 2019

Irish Rail line back in operation five months after its closure due to flooding

Irish Rail
Irish Rail
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

A railway line that was forced to close due to flooding during the winter storms has reopened this afternoon.

The Irish Rail line between Ennis and Limerick resumed for the 4.30pm service from Limerick for the first time since last December.

A spokesperson for Iarnród Éireann said that an inspection train operated today, and engineers certified the line safe for trains to resume.

This includes all Limerick/Ennis and Limerick/Galway services.

Irish Rail's Barry Kenny told that the company is "pleased to have the line open for our customers".

"They have shown great understanding over the months of bus tranfers and disruption, and we look forward to welcoming them back on board."

The line flooded following a significant increase in water levels at Ballycar Lough due to the heavy rainfall in December and January. 

While the intense rainfall ceased in January, inflows caused flood levels at Ballycar to peak in early March at 1.4 metres above the rail line.

A number of schemes have been proposed to alleviate the flooding in future, accroding to Irish Rail, including raising the line over a significant distance, but funding is currently unavailable for these works. 

Iarnród Éireann has previously raised the track level by 60 centimetres at Ballycar in 2003 to mitigate against the effects of flooding. 

The attached footage shows an aerial view of test train operation today.

Meanwhile, there have been reported delays of the 7pm Dublin Heuston to Cork service due to a "mechanical fault".

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