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WATCH: Mountmellick prepares for the worst as uncertainty lingers over flood risk

Michelle Hogan

Reporter:

Michelle Hogan


Sandbags are lining the streets of Mountmellick tonight to protect against any possible flooding that may occur.

Local people were watching the level of the Owners River on Sunday in anticipation.

They were trying to judge if it would hold the water that was rapidly flowing from the Slieve Bloom Mountains or burst like it did last November.

Pictures: River level precarious in Mountmellick as locals fear more floods.

Sandbags line O’Moore street, Manor Road and Irishtown as people scramble to protect their homes and businesses.

The rivers around the town are all high and flowing rapidly. Many fields have been filled with pools of water.

A feeling of uncertainty lingers in the town tonight as people don’t know what to expect.

The memories of November are still fresh in the minds of the local people.

The public park in Mountmellick is still fenced off since it was last flooded in November and today it was flooded again with water from the Owenass spilling over. 

The Hare's Corner restaurant in Irishtown is due to open in the next two weeks after the damage that was caused in November, sandbags are piled high at the doors. 

Sonas Community Childcare in the same area is operating out of a temporary facility after their original facility was badly damaged in November. 

Trojan work has been done in Mountmellick to get homes and businesses back to normal after the devastation caused by flooding two months ago.

The Rosenallis road just after Derrycloney Bridge in Mountmellick is closed due to flooding. This is near Manor Road where families were evacuated from their homes by boat in November.

Laois fire service and county council staff respond to stream of flooding incidents.

Donal Keenan who is still living in rented accommodation with his family after his home on Manor Road was completely flooded in November was at Derrycloney Bridge today monitoring the water levels.

"I wasn't expecting this at all. I don't like that water there at all because what direction is it going to go? It has a straight run to Manor Road," he said.

Donal and his family have been living in rented accommodation organised by Laois County Council since December 22, one month after the flood hit and just days before Christmas.

"There is support for us and I am getting work lined up it is hard to get people on site at the same time. I need a plumber and an electrician. Once that falls into place then I will have a free run. 

"We are in a rented house so we are not too bad. We are where we are, we are grand, nobody is hurt," Donal told Leinster Express.

Donal was monitoring the situation at Derrycloney Bridge to see if his house would be exposed to more flooding if the water levels rose however he shared the same feeling of uncertainty that was felt by those monitoring water levels in Irishtown all day.

Nobody knows if the river banks will hold for the night but the people of Mountmellick have learned to prepare for the worst.

Watch: Flood fears in Mountmellick as Owenass river is rising rapidly.