Irish Water under fire over flooding unease on Longford road

Water anxieties resurface on R149

Liam Cosgrove


Liam Cosgrove


Irish Water has come under renewed fire over its handling of a troublesome section of road between Killoe and Longford town which has caused significant flood damage to local homes.

The public utility has long been the frequent butt of scathing criticism from local politicians concerning the recurring frequency of bursts to a water mains located along the R194 between Longford and Killoe.

At a local authority meeting recently, Cllr Peggy Nolan had stinging words for Irish Water’s management of an adjoining section of road between Kiernan’s Forge and Knockawalky.

“The damage they done to the roads,” she said, when addressing the issue at the June meeting of Longford Municipal District.

“There is a woman of 90 living on that road and never did she ever suffer from flooding.

“Since Irish Water went in and the carnage they left, that woman’s property has badly flooded as has numerous people on that road.”

The long serving Fine Gael representative said while she was cognisant of the fact the issue was not one of Longford County Council’s concern, it was imperative the situation was not allowed deteriorate any further.

She said a large slice of that unease was loosely based on information she had relayed to locals in the area, informing them the problem was in hand.

“It’s not the Council’s fault but we have to take responsibility and make Irish Water cough up,” she said.

“It’s causing untold trouble and people are very angry.

“I was told it would be sorted. I need it to happen now because people think I misled them and I can’t sit here and let it go.”

Local engineer Brian McNeela responded by confirming work on the road was a top priority for the local authority over the coming weeks.

“The contractor is in Newtownforbes at the moment doing permanent reinstatement on the trenches and once he is finished there he will go out to Victor Kiernan’s,” he said.