East Derry Sinn Féin MLA Cathal Ó hOisín has welcomed a measure by TransportNI to have ‘sandbag stores’ in areas previously prone to flooding, particularly in the Dungiven area.
“In recent weeks, we have seen properties flooded and had it not been for the swift actions of householders, locally elected representatives, and the availability of a local contractor who had sandbags in place and was able to deliver them at short notice, then the damage caused could have been much worse,” said Mr Ó hOisín.
“I brought this up at last week’s Regional Development committee and was pleased with the swift and decisive action, from the Transport NI officials. That having been said, it is well past the point that watercourses like the Hass Burn remain undesignated and this leaves the responsibilty for bank maintainance with the riparian landowners, leaving houses and properties vulnerable to erosion and flooding.”
Mr O’ Ó hOisín said government agencies, including NI Environment Agency and Rivers Agency, “need to step up to the mark and action the designation and maintainance of these waters”.
Several properties in Dungiven suffered flooding last month during torrential rain resulting in raw sewage flowing into their back gardens.