UPDATED 1pm, Friday, January 3:
Lahinch Promenade is closed to the public because of damage caused by last night’s storm and fears further flooding could be in store tonight.
Clare County Council has confirmed that Lahinch Promenade in County Clare will remain closed to the public until further notice after the Promenade walkways and seawall were “seriously comprised” during stormy weather overnight.
Clare County Council says that Units of Clare Civil Defence and Clare County Fire and Rescue Service have been mobilised to deal with the incident and if required, other incidents throughout the county.
The manager of Clare County Council and the county’s senior engineer were in Lahinch this morning assessing the damage to the prom and public amenities there. Further damage has been reported in Doolin, Spanish Point and Quilty. As well as infrastructural damage to car parks, roads and footpaths, homes and businesses were also affected.
One local person described the damage at Lahinch as the worst seen since the storms of the early 90s.
There were also power outages in several areas along the West Clare coast as a result of the storm.
Council Senior Engineer, Tom Tiernan said: “We are advising members of the public to stay away from the seafront for their own safety to enable the authorities to assess the damage caused to the promenade. Flooding is receding in the Promenade area. However, the threat of further flooding remains with this evening’s high tide a source of concern. In advance of this we are urging home and business owners, particularly those in low lying coastal areas, to take precautionary steps.”
Clare County Council, in conjunction with the Emergency Services, says it is progressing contingency arrangements in terms of additional pumping capacity and other flood alleviation measures at flood prone locations throughout Clare.
The Council confirmed that river levels have increased significantly over the past week, and arrangements have been put in place to continuously monitor the situation.
In light of the high river levels, land, home and business owners along with motorists are being urged to exercise increased vigilance concerning the potential for localised flooding.
A national orange alert weather warning remains in place and Met Éireann has warned that southwesterly gale to storm force winds will continue on all Irish Coastal Waters.
Flooding advice is available on www.flooding.ie. Information included on the website includes advice on identifying flooding risks, protecting property against flooding, necessary steps to be taken if a property is flooded, and assessing and repairing property damaged by flooding.