Wednesday 24 April 2019

Fingal bakes in 'heatwave'

Locals enjoy the outdoor life but water is drying up

John Manning

Fingal has been baked in heat for the last week as the seemingly never-ending heatwave kept blazing bringing the good people of Fingal outdoors in their thousands to enjoy the county's parks and beaches.

The county's beaches were packed including at Skerries where the Fingal photographer snapped families enjoying the good weather.

It is in weather like this that the county's beautiful parks really shine and there was plenty of evidence of increased use of places like Ardgillan Castle, Malahide Castle and Newbridge House and Farm through another week of baking temperatures.

The mercury made record-breaking journeys north of 30 degrees during the week and there is no sign of the heatwave abating.

While the sun is a source of joy for most, it is also beginning to affect water supplies in the county and the continuing drought is also impacting on the local farming community.

On Monday, Irish Water issued a statement on the continuing drought saying that while the usage in the Greater Dublin Area, which includes Fingal, was marginally down over the weekend as many people left the area and businesses were closed, usage in the area remains well above normal.

An Irish Water spokesperson said: 'We are appealing to the public and business owners as they return to work to continue to conserve water to protect water levels in our reservoirs. While Irish Water can currently produce up to 610 million litres per day, at these levels all headroom is exhausted and the sources, particularly Pollaphuca reservoir on the Liffey is being drawn down at a rate that puts supplies at risk later in the summer and into the autumn.'

Irish Water has also mobilised tankers across the country to fill reservoirs that are most at risk to protect water supplies and to ensure that customers have access to water an the company a hose pipe ban this week in the Greater Dublin Area.

Irish Water said it 'is using all tools available to promote water conservation and to protect our water supplies including mobilising leakage repair teams and has imposed a Water Conservation Order in the Greater Dublin Area which comes into effect on Monday, July 2. The Water Conservation Order will be in place until July 31 but Irish Water will keep the situation under review and may have to extend the period of time the Order is in place. It is likely that similar orders will be brought in over the coming weeks on other schemes'. While water might be in short supply, a quick look at our beaches will tell you that ice-cream is not and with no end in sight to the sunny spell, there is plenty more opportunity to go out and enjoy Fingal in the sun.

Fingal Independent