Donegal County Council has confirmed that the Bailey Bridge currently being constructed by the Irish army in Inishowen will now not open until Wednesday.
It had been hoped that the bridge and associated works would be completed to enable the reopening of the main Quigley’s Point to Carndonagh Road on Monday evening.
However an assessment today revealed that further essential works needed to be carried out at the site, following extensive damage caused by the storms which wreaked havoc across Inishowen a fortnight ago.
Carndonagh was all but cut off from south Inishowen in the immediate aftermath of the storms, with numerous main routes into and out of the town damaged.
Update on Recovery from Flooding
A spokesperson for Donegal County Council said: “Work has continued over the weekend on the installation of the temporary bailey bridge on the R240 at Riverside between Quigleys Point and Carndonagh.
“Although it was hoped to have this road open to single lane traffic later this evening, it is likely to be Wednesday afternoon as additional work is required.
“Level differences encountered on site and the structure of the bailey bridge has meant that an asphalt approach has to be laid on top of the stone ramp and this essential work must be complete before the road can open.”
Work on the R238 at Three Trees between Muff and Quigleys Point is continuing and it is expected that this road will be open to two way traffic later this week.
The R244 at Craignahorna on the Mountain Road between Buncrana and Carndonagh remains closed. It is not feasible to reopen this road in the short term. Local diversions remain in place.
The L-1781-6 Grainne’s Gap is now open with a small diversion around Thompsonstown Bridge.
A number of rural roads across the peninsula remain closed and are likely to remain closed for a number of weeks. Local diversions are in place. These roads include the following:
L-1891-2 - Eskaheen Road to chapel
L-1381-2 - Meendacalliagh/Evishbreedy: Illies to Glentoghter
L-53912 – Annagh
L-7451-1 - Drumskillen Road
L-7631-3 - Glenbridge Road
L-7641-1 – Gortcormacan
L-7681-1 - Lowertown Road/Gortcormacan
L-7761-2 - Knowhead Road/Calfwarn
Work is continuing to identify and cost design solutions to repair the extensive damage caused to the 1500km road network is Inishowen.
To date in excess of 425 issues have been identified. Road users are being asked to continue to exercise extreme care when using these roads.
The Council’s Housing Service is continuing to provide support and assistance to those affected by the floods.
To date 50 families have registered with Donegal County Council and at this stage, solutions been found for 19 families. In many of these cases, this is an interim solution until such times as they are in a position to move back to their home. Some have already moved to their new accommodation, and in other cases arrangements are being finalised or the Council is awaiting responses to offers made. 7 further cases are still to be addressed, and the remaining cases do not required action at this time.
An information leaflet drop is continuing today in the Inishowen area via An Post
This leaflet is being delivered to each home in the Inishowen area and sets out information on supports and assistance available to those affected by flooding and will be of particular use to those who do not have access to the internet.
A number of applications for financial assistance have been received by the Irish Red Cross in respect of this Humanitarian Support Scheme which is available for small businesses and community, voluntary and sporting bodies who do not have insurance in place.
A maximum of €20,000 is available for applicants under this scheme and application forms are available at www.redcross.ie/news-and- events/Donegal+humanitarian+flooding+assistance/.
The Council thanked the Defence Forces for their tremendous help and assistance over the last week and although these personnel have been stood down at this point, the Council is continuing to support home owners, businesses and community & voluntary groups with clean-up efforts.
Anyone who requires help with clean-ups or who need to access skips and/or dehumidifiers should contact Donegal County Council at 074 91 53900.
For those who are feeling emotionally overwhelmed at the moment, a dedicated HSE Helpline for Flooding has been established and is available from 9am to 5pm on 07491 67558 or alternatively call the Samaritans at 116 123.
The Irish Red Cross has agreed to receive donations to help assist those affected by the recent floods and these donations will be administered through the local Red Cross unit in Donegal. You can make a donation the Irish Red Cross Society, Account Number 10005462, Account NSC 900017 and donations should be referenced to the ‘Donegal Floods Appeal’. Any donations received will be restricted for use in the Donegal area and all donations will be acknowledged.
Anyone who has been affected by this flooding incident and who requires support and assistance including housing, assistance with cleaning their properties or any other humanitarian need, should contact the Council by calling into our offices or by calling 074 91 53900 during opening hours or 074 91 72288 during out of hours.
You can also keep up to date by following Donegal County Council on Facebook or on Twitter @DonegalCouncil.
Irish Water meanwhile have said they are to carry out permanent repairs to infrastructure damaged in the recent flooding over the coming weeks.
The organisation have confirmed that all areas affected across Inishowen have now been reconnected.
A spokesperson for Irish Water said that assessments of the damage were ongoing. Damage to pipework connected to affected bridges and roads will be replaced in conjunction with the County Council Roads Service restoration project.
Unprecedented rainfall on the night of August 22 caused significant damage to roads and bridges which had a direct impact on pipework and treatment plants.
Since then, temporary repairs have been carried out in the affected areas to maintain water supply for customers and to restore treatment of wastewater.
Irish Water said that due to the nature of the damage to parts of the network, customers in some areas may experience some disruption to services as the permanent repairs are carried out.
A number of wastewater plants in Inishowen were also impacted as a result of the flooding and the majority have been restored to normal operation.
Laurence Nash, Irish Water’s Operations Lead for Donegal, said: “We would like to acknowledge the huge efforts of Donegal County Council staff in dealing with this unprecedented incident.”
“The Service and Supply section of the Irish Water website (www.water.ie) will continue to be updated regularly with details of any disruptions and we are advising customers to contact the 24/7 customer care line at 1850 278 278 to report any incidents in their area.”