Westport follows Foxford in being too costly for flood defence works

Fri, Oct 28, 2016

Following the news last week that Foxford had been deemed as being 'not cost beneficial' to have flood prevention works carried out on it as part of the Western Catchement Flood Risk Assessment and Manangment (CFRAM) scheme, Westport fell to a similar fate this week. And like the response from local representatives in Foxford last week, there was disappointment and bemusement from the elected members of the West Mayo District at this news.

The members were told by the OPW, which is responsible for the scheme, that if a one in 1,000 year flood occurred on the Carrowbeg River in the heart of the town, the estimated damage it would cause would be in the region of €620,000; however following investigations as part of the programme it was found that it would cost in the region of €1 million to put in improvement works to stop such an event happening, therefore it was deemed not to be cost beneficial to carry out such works.

Last year following very heavy rainfall the river rose to the top of the walls along The Mall in the town and there was serious concern that it was going to overspill the walls and cause serious damage to properties along Castlebar and Bridge Street in the town, and Mayo County Council was forced to close off the streets. The actual level of the flooding was not recorded either, because the monitor that was being used by the EPA to monitor the river washed away in the flood was washed away, because it wasn't designed for that kind of work and the OPW themselves use a different monitor for such detection.


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