Dublin authorities anxiously await Thursday high tide

Met Éireann flood and rain warnings remain with flooding possible in coastal areas

Negotiating a flooded road near Enniskerry, Co Wicklow, today. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Dublin city authorities are awaiting the expected Thursday high tide anxiously, though buoyed by Wednesday’s lower than expected sea surge which failed to cause any major flooding.

“We dodged a bullet,” said council spokeswoman Angela Walsh, who said there was no flooding in any of the high risk areas – on the north city coast at Clontarf and the corresponding southside coastal stretch at Sandymount.

“For major flooding along the lines feared, you need high tides, high winds and low pressure and then you’re in trouble,” said Ms Walsh.

Met Éireann flood and rain warnings remain, with forecasters warning of possible flooding in coastal areas and concerns over the volume of water in the River Lee in Cork.


While strollers along Dublin’s quays at midday yesterday saw the Liffey at heights rarely witnessed, the relatively calm day produced no tidal surge.

Nonetheless, the side arches of several of the river’s bridges were submerged beneath high flowing water and the river lapped at the underside of the entire Rosie Hackett Luas line bridge being built between Marlborough Street and Hawkins Street.

The Millennium Boardwalk remains closed, due to flood barriers blocking entrance to it from quayside footpaths.

Tidal barriers near the mouths of the rivers Dodder on the southside and Tolka on the northside will also remain in place to protect the adjacent areas from being flooded by Friday’s high tide which is expected at 12.30pm.

The only flooding that did occur in the city yesterday was caused by waves splashing over sea walls at Clontarf and Sandymount creating what is called “ponding” on coastal roads in both places.

Public car parks remain closed in both locations as a precaution and sand bags at strategic locations in Clontarf (near Alfie Byrne Road) and at Sandymount will remain in place until early next week.

Many western and Midland areas, particularly around Longford, Rocsommon and Leitrim are already experiencing more severe flooding than usual. Fields close to the Shannon not usually affected by flooding are beneath water this winter, and those that are usually flooded are experiencing a greater volume of water than usual.

Met Éireann says the outlook remains very unsettled for January with rain and cold forecast for many areas from now and through the weekend.

In Cork, tidal surges are expected tomorrow at 6am and 6pm and again on Friday, one hour later on each occasion. Areas of the city where flooding could occur include South Terrace, Trinity Bridge, Rutland Street, Cotter Street, Stable Lane, Union Quay, Morrisons Quay, Proby's Quay, Frenchs Quay, Crosses Green, Sharman Crawford St, Wandesford Quay, Lavitts Quay, Kyrls Street & Kyrls Quay, Coal Quay and Lapps Quay

Other areas at potential risk are South Mall, Oliver Plunkett Street, Pembroke St., Princes Street, Marlborough Street, Cook Street, Winthrop Street, Kennedy Quay, Centre Park Road, Monahan’s Road, Georges Quay, and the low lying areas of the City Centre, according to Cork Council.

Public transport remained largely unaffected by the weather. However, because of a landslide at Waterford train station, bus transfers between Waterford and Kilkenny for Waterford/Dublin train services, and between Waterford and Carrick-on-Suir for Waterford/Limerick Junction train services are expected to continue for a number of days.

Elsewhere, the weather was being blamed for the collapse of a retaining wall at Coyningham Road in Dublin.

Peter Murtagh

Peter Murtagh

Peter Murtagh is a contributor to The Irish Times