Last Friday saw Drogheda residents and businesses without water yet again. Council workers erecting a ‘No Parking’ sign in John Street accidently drilled into a water main causing three businesses in the street to flood and deprived half the town of water. The rest of Drogheda had brown or murky water coming out of their taps.
Local Sinn Féin Councillor Kenneth Flood was inundated with calls, texts and emails from affected residents. “The Council estimated the water would be off until midnight and their website said there would be water collection points at Wogans in the town and on Newfoundwell Road” said Councillor Flood. “However, there was no signage or containers at the latter collection point and people were queueing at Wogans until after midnight.”
Councillor Flood had requested a water tanker to visit the affected areas in the late afternoon. However, Flood said “after 5pm my follow up calls to the Council’s water services line went unanswered as did their out of hours emergency number and their website updates stopped. It is unacceptable that residents are left with no information just because it is after 5pm on a Friday.”
The situation had not improved by Saturday. Kenneth Flood said “residents can not use washing machines, dishwashers or even shower properly. I had been told that the water was building back up in the system and full service would be restored soon. I was told again that the website could not be updated to keep people informed until Monday. It’s a nonsense situation and an illogical way of conducting a public service.”
Councillor Flood intends to submit a motion for the next Municipal District meeting asking that Irish Water attend so “we can lay out the facts before them and demand a better service for the people of Drogheda which will include:
- The website to be updated out of hours if needed
- Water tankers with drinking water sent to affected areas as a matter of protocol
- Follow-up plumbing service to deal with air-locks after an outage
The people of Drogheda deserve to be treated with a bit of respect and that has been sadly lacking.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Kenneth Flood has hit out at the lack of communication from Irish Water to thousands of residents who found themselves without water on Monday.
Flood said “After talking to residents I learned this can happen on average four times a year. The problem appears to be the watermain on the North Quay in Drogheda. When it bursts thousands of residents are affected from Greenhills, Termonfeckin Road, Newtownstalaban, Queensborough and Beaulieu. Several residents are also reporting air-locks in their water systems which will require a plumber to fix them, at considerable expense to themselves.”
An Angry Kenneth Flood continued “what I don’t understand is why it keeps happening. What quality of parts are they replacing it with? A patch up job is a false economy, people deserve better than this.”
The Sinn Féin Councillor also questioned the lack of information available. “There was no notice on the Council website until well into the day and there was no notice on the Irish Water website at all that there would be any disruption. When you get up on a Monday morning the last thing on your mind is ‘I must check the website to see if there will be enough water for the day’. This is 21st Century Ireland and there must be better communication with households who are having water charges forced on them by Irish Water. This is poor service and simply isn’t good enough.”
Sinn Féin in Drogheda will hold it’s annual Easter commemoration to commemorate the anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising and also all those who gave their lives in the pursuit of Irish Freedom. The parade will assemble at 12 o’clock outside St. Peters Church on West Street before marching to the republican monument on the Marsh Rd. The speaker will be Sinn Féin MLA Cathal Boylan, and local Sinn Féin candidate Kenneth Flood will chair the event and all are welcome to attend.
Commenting in advance of the event Kenneth said,
“We will gather here in Drogheda on Easter Sunday to remember those republican revolutionaries who, in 1916 took on the might of the British empire and asserted in arms Ireland’s right to independence. We will also honour those who died in the cause of Irish freedom in every decade before and since 1916”.
Echoing the words of Louth TD and party president Gerry Adams, Kenneth said he would encourage as many people as possible to join in those commemorations, to celebrate 1916 and promote the ideal of Irish unity and independence.
He also called for people to “wear with pride the Easter lily, which is the symbol of our enduring commitment to these ideals and of our respect for all those, from every generation, who paid the ultimate sacrifice for Irish freedom.
“We wear an Easter Lily with pride, mindful not only of the past but of the promise of a brighter future.”
Members of Sinn Féin will sell Easter Lilies in the local area next week or you can call into the Sinn Féin office in West Street.