Limerick a disaster zone as floods wreck homes and businesses


Irish homeowners have been warned to prepare for more flooding as an orange storm alert remains in place across the country. Ireland’s weather service Met Eireann has warned that high winds and heavy rain are set to continue with the risk of flooding until the middle of this week.

Their warning was issued as homeowners in Dublin, Cork and Limerick are already counting the cost of torrential rain and floods in recent days. According to Met Eireann forecaster Tim O’Brien, “There will be a short break today but the wet and windy weather will continue on Tuesday and Wednesday with some areas at risk of flooding.”

The areas most at risk of flooding will depend on high tides and wind direction. The high tides in Cork have passed so it may ease up for today. “Water will begin to recede in devastated areas in Limerick and Cork but the areas will still be at risk of flooding during the week. Waterford may be at risk today as southerly winds and wet weather in the east may induce flooding.”

Limerick resident James Ring told his story to Irish state broadcaster RTE, a story shared by many across the country. Ring said: “Saturday morning we woke to find literally a wall of water surging towards our house. When I opened the blinds of the back door of my house I saw a four and a half foot wall of water looking back at me.

“As you can imagine it was quite frightening. The flooding happened so quickly that householders in the area had no chance to prevent the damage.

“All we could do was pick up a couple of things and run from our home. The house is destroyed. We live in terraced bungalows so literally every room in our house is destroyed.

“I pay over €600 ($800) a year for insurance and the problem is that we can’t get insurance for floods. That’s the problem that we’re faced with now.

“What’s causing such panic in the community is that people just don’t know what way to turn.” Flood victim Ring called on the Irish government to provide financial help to those affected by the flood damage.

He added, ‘‘This is a disaster zone. We’re talking numbers in the thousands here being affected.”