IRISH Water have been branded a ‘disgrace’ for not being properly prepared for Storm Ophelia and for not having back-up generators in place.
Cllr Aidan Lombard (FG) was speaking at a recent meeting of Bandon Kinsale Municipal District where councillors had praised the work of local authority.
‘The response to Storm Ophelia from Cork County Council was great as well as from the farmers and communities in general who did their bit, but I think Irish Water were a disgrace,’ said Cllr Lombard.
‘We couldn’t get a back-up generator in Crosshaven on Friday even though everyone knew Ophelia was coming and we couldn’t get a generator for Minane on Thursday – we were scrambling around the country looking for generators.’
Cllr Lombard added that ‘the dogs in the street knew it was going to happen’.
‘I can’t understand how there weren’t generators set up in all of these locations. We knew what was coming, water needs to be maintained and Irish Water should, to be fair, be more prepared in that.’
Chairperson of Bandon Kinsale Municipal District, Cllr Rachel McCarthy (SF) said she, too, wanted to commend the County Council on their work during Storm Ophelia and for their regular updates which kept both the councillors and the general public informed.
‘It was very hard to have a plan of action when no one knew what Ophelia could bring to the country. Staff did their best in the circumstances and in their remit they absolutely did their best,’ said Cllr McCarthy.
Senior executive engineer Charlie McCarthy also paid tribute to all Council staff who ‘pulled out all the stops’ during and after the storm.
‘Landowners in the communities as well made huge efforts in terms of the clean-up and without all of that a lot of the roads may not have been opened,’ said Mr McCarthy.