Cork braces itself for flooding as heavy rain, high tides and strong winds combine

Council distributes over 2,000 sandbags as colleges cancel night classes

Many people in Cork city spent yesterday preparing for last night's high tide and threatened flooding.

City manager Tim Lucey urged business people in the city centre to remain in their properties to protect them against flooding.

Cork City Council hosted a meeting of the Flood Emergency Response Group at 3pm yesterday involving representatives of the Defence Forces, the Naval Service, gardaí, HSE and the port of Cork, as well as council officials.

The council said it had distributed about 2,000 sandbags to homeowners and business people in low-lying areas of the city.


Motorists were urged to avoid the city centre between 8pm and 10pm because vehicles on flooded streets might cause a backwash that would exacerbate flooding.

Pedestrians were also urged to avoid the city centre because of the danger of falling into exposed manholes.

The planned closure of the Jack Lynch Tunnel from 8pm for routine maintenance work was deferred until 10pm.

Shutting the tunnel at 8pm would have increased the number of cars having to go through the city centre at flood times.

The College of Commerce on Morrisson's Island and the CIT Cork School of Music on Union Quay and St John's College, Sawmill Street, cancelled night classes in anticipation of areas around the South Channel flooding at high tide at 9pm.

Heavy rain in the city throughout yesterday afternoon combined with strong southeasterly winds which prevented water from the river Lee draining quickly into Cork harbour.

The conditions gave rise to fears that last night’s flooding might be as bad as the city suffered on Monday morning.

The high tide at 8am on Monday led to flooding on Union Quay, George's Quay, Wandesford Quay, Morrisson's Island, Sharman Crawford Street and South Terrace.

City centre areas, including the South Mall and Oliver Plunkett Street and sides streets were also flooded.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times