River Lee bursts banks as Cork hit by early morning flooding

Windspeeds hit 100km/h as high seas also cause problems in coastal towns

The River Lee has burst its banks in Cork city centre. Photograph: Damian Ó Laocha

The River Lee has burst its banks in Cork city centre. Photograph: Damian Ó Laocha

Mon, Jan 6, 2014, 10:01

Cork is again counting the cost of the bad weather after a combination of heavy overnight rain and high tides caused flooding in low-lying parts of the city this morning.

A high tide at 8.46am, together with huge water volumes flowing down the River Le, led to flooding in low-lying parts of the city centre. Areas adjacent to the south channel of the Lee where the river came over the quay walls were also affected.

Sharman Crawford Street flooded after the south channel spilled out into Wandesford Quay and both areas were closed to traffic while further downstream O’Sullivan’s Quay, George’s Quay, Union Quay and Copley Street had all flooded on the southern side of the South Channel.

Morrison’s Island also flooded, damaging several cars that had been parked nearby while Fr Matthew Quay and Fr Matthew Street were also flooded as was the southern side of the South Mall.

According to gardaí at Anglesea Street, the College of Commerce on Morrison’s Island was virtually inaccessible after water flowed on to the roadway. “It’s like there’s a moat around the College of Commerce at the moment,” said one eye witness.

According to Met Éireann at Cork Airport, windspeeds hit 96km/h at 8.20am this morning. The winds veered overnight from south to south west but never became south easterly, which can cause even greater problems adding to high tides flowing upstream into the city centre.

High tides were also causing problems in the county with a high tide in the Owenacurra River causing the Bealick Road in Midleton to flood while Catherine Street in Youghal was also flooded due to high tides.

In West Cork, a high tide flooded Wolfe Tone Square in Bantry with high winds driving waves over the quay walls there from early this morning while the Durrus to Ahakista Road had to be closed again due to flooding.