‘Stay off Wexford roads’, says council as county hit by flash flooding

Multiple routes in county impassable as Bridgetown sees waters of up to 1.5m in depth

Wexford County Council said late on Saturday night that people should stay off the roads and only travel “unless absolutely essential” as parts of the county were hit by flash flooding.

A Met Éireann status yellow rainfall warning was in place until 8pm for the county, as well as counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Wicklow and Waterford.

Wexford County Council said a number of routes became impassable by mid-afternoon on Christmas Day at Castlebridge, the Carcur area in Wexford town, Carleys Bridge in Enniscorthy and the N25 at Barntown.

An Garda Síochána tweeted that there was localised flooding along parts of the N30, N25 and R735 routes.

Bridgetown experienced the “worst flooding since 1959” on Saturday, prompting a significant response from multiple emergency service agencies. Bridgetown, a village of just 462 people became submerged when heavy rainfall pelted the area relentlessly from early morning. It led to flooding of over 1.5m and the emergency evacuation of nine separate residences.

Emergency Services including Fethard-on-sea Coast Guard Unit, Kilmore Quay Coast Guard, Wexford Fire Service, HSE, Wexford Gardaí and Rescue 117 rushed to the aid of villagers with two casualties being added in two separate locations by Rescue 117 advanced paramedics.

The rescue was co-ordinated by Dublin Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre who said that Wexford was being “inundated” by flooding at the moment with multiple emergency response units including Rosslare Coast Guard currently dealing with incidents.

The local Civil Defence set up an emergency response and accommodation in a local community centre. There are no serious injuries reported.

Gardaí said the south of the county has been worst affected and that there were a number of impassable roads around the Kilmore Quay, Mayglass and Barntown areas.

The Rivery Slaney in Enniscorthy burst its banks around 7pm – about two hours before high tide – flooding streets in the town centre.

Footage on social media showed a section of the R735 at Chapel Station in Adamstown had been washed away and the route was impassable. Gardaí said local farmers are assisting in the recovery of some stuck vehicles in places.

Transport Infrastructure Ireland said there was heavy flooding on the M11 in parts in both directions between J21 Arklow and J23 Courtown.

Other flooding has been seen in the Clonroche, Raheen, Duncormick and Camross areas.

Flooding was also reported in Baltinglass, Ashford and Bray in Co Wicklow.