Up to 10,000 homes and business were without power for some stage around the county due to Storm Eleanor this week, with almost all of them having it restored by Wednesday evening. A spokesperson for the ESB told the Mayo Advertiser that: "We had local crews out working from Tuesday evening to restore power and they were joined by crews from around the country from places like Dublin and Donegal to assist, and they have been working around the clock to restore power to everybody."
As of yesterday lunchtime there were still some 750 homes and businesses without power in Mayo with 190 in Kiltimagh, 144 in Swinford, 70 in Westport, and 60 in Charlestown the major areas without power, and the rest in small clusters dotted around the county.
Mayo County Council crews were out from Tuesday evening dealing with the effects of the storm and Martina Hughes, head of communications for the council, told the Mayo Advertiser; "We had crews out all over the county working on the clean-up effort throughout the event. The biggest issue on Tuesday night was clearing trees from roads that had fallen, and then it was clearing debris from the roads in the morning. It was a countywide event and there were crews out in each municipal district on the ground. There were flooding problems in the Westport area that had to be dealt with, and we also had a issue with the water supply in Kiltimagh which we are dealing with in conjunction with Irish Water, and hope to have it fixed by Thursday [yesterday] evening.
The water outage was caused because of a power outage, due to Storm Eleanor which impacted the water treatment plant in Kiltimagh. Irish Water working with Mayo County Council put in place a temporary power supply to run the plant during the power outage. This facilitated the return of water supply to many customers in the Kiltimagh area. An alternative water supply was put in place at Supervalu Carpark in Kiltimagh for people whose supply had been cut. Due to an issue associated with Storm Eleanor, some areas of Westport town also experienced intermittent low pressure in their water supply.
Carrowholly residents still living in fear
The need for flood defence works to be carried out in Carrowholly outside Westport came to the fore again this week following the arrival of Storm Eleanor - which whipped across the country on Tuesday evening leaving thousands without power and causing flooding issues all over the country.
The residents of Carrowholly were once again fearing for their property during the storm - which brought back memories of the 2014 storms which saw a large number of residents cut off due to flooding and their homes filled with water. Local independent councillor Chirsty Hyland who has been very vocal on the need for a solution to be delivered to help these people since 2014 told the Mayo Advertiser: "The people out there are living in fear every time there is a worry about a storm or potential flooding and it was the same on Tuesday."
He added: "The wall or the barrier as it was known locally, was destroyed in 2014 and has not been replaced, and it had stopped the water coming up on the road in the past - and the last night [Tuesday] the water came up on the road and with it boulders, and debris were washed up blocking the road.
"In fairness to the staff of Mayo County Council they got out there and had the road cleared in the early morning, but the people are living in fear there because of what happened in 2014 and could happen again. You saw on Tuesday people moving their cars the far side of where the flooding was to make sure that if the road was flooded they would be able to get to work or school or wherever the next morning, because they knew from experience before of what can happen.
"They have been waiting a long time for work to be done to protect them and they are losing faith in the system, they are sick of waiting for something to be done, and it's up to the Government to push ahead and get the work done - it's gone on far to long.
"Some of the residents have told me that - if this isn't sorted and something done, they will go ahead and fix the barrier themselves. I've told them that I am foursquare behind them if they have to do it."