Cavan County Council has commissioned aerial photographs of the areas worst hit by flooding in recent weeks. This is part of a bid to assist homeowners, who were in flood-hit areas but whose homes were not damaged, in obtaining insurance cover going forward.
The move comes as senior government Ministers met with the chief executives of the country’s five main local authorities to discuss the provision of insurance cover for those affected by flooding.
As the Government plans to spend €500m on flood defences over the next five years, insurance companies have been widely criticised for refusing to provide cover for some homes in areas liable to flood.
Before this week’s meeting of the Baileborough-Cootehill Municipal District, area engineer Jim McQuaid informed elected members that the local authority would give every assistance to homeowners struggling to get cover despite the fact their dwelling is under no significant threat. “There are houses in flooded areas that are on a hill and have never, and won’t flood. We will wait until we get these photographs back and, where there are cases of people facing difficulty in getting cover, we will assist them in any way we can and provide these photographs to the insurance company,” he said.
As reported last week, initial costs for dealing with the flood damage are estimated at around €2m in Co Cavan alone. Here the foods caused damage to 20 homes and six businesses, as well a leaving 113 families cut-off and forcing the closure of 70 roads.
Drainage works demanded
Before the Dáil last week, Cavan-Monaghan Fianna Fail TD Brendan Smith called on the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform to allocate funding to Cavan and Monaghan county councils to carry out essential drainage work on the Erne and Dromore river systems.
He was informed by Minister for State Simon Harris, who has responsibility for the Office of Public Works, that the planned river maintenance programme in County Cavan in 2016 includes work on some 18km of the Inny scheme, approximately seven kilometres on the Boyne scheme and three kilometres of the Glyde and Dee schemes.
In Co Monaghan, the OPW programme includes work on 65km of the Monaghan Blackwater Arterial Drainage Scheme and some 35km of the Glyde and Dee schemes.
Sinn Féin’s Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin also estimated that the sum needed to address issues in the area of Monaghan Town’s shopping centre and credit union could stretch as high as €15m.
Meanwhile, draft mapping under the Catchment Flood Risk Assessment and Management (CFRAM) Programme is now being finalised.
The final output, which will ultimately provide for a national integrated Flood Risk Management Plan, is scheduled for publication and public consultation in mid-2016, to be completed towards the end of the year.