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Irish Water will get the bill, say family hit by burst mains

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Workmen cleaning up Ashford estate which was flooded in Clondalkin, Dublin

Workmen cleaning up Ashford estate which was flooded in Clondalkin, Dublin

Collins Dublin, Gareth Chaney

Ashwood Estate, Clondalkin. A burst water main has flooded the area

Ashwood Estate, Clondalkin. A burst water main has flooded the area

Workmen cleaning up Ashford estate which was flooded in Clondalkin, Dublin

A family who lost three cars and had their home and garden flooded after a water main ruptured say they will send the bill for damages to Irish Water.

Tony Lawlor and his neighbours were woken by gardai at around 6am yesterday to be told to be ready to leave their Clondalkin homes due to the rising water.

A vital water main near their home in the Ashwood estate had ruptured and their street was filling up like a bath.

responsibility

Mr Lawlor said crews who worked to fix the mains burst had told locals that it happened when a junction connecting two pipes failed.

As well as digging up the green space where the mains fracture occurred, workers also dug two holes outside Tony's house and were still working on the problem as darkness fell, while locals had no water in their taps.

"There were three cars in the driveway of my house belonging to different family members and there are pools of dirty water in them all," Tony said.

"And water got under our house through an air vent under the floor level and we don't know yet what damage that has done," he added.

"I was onto the insurance companies today to tell them I was involved in the floods that were on the news, but as far as I'm concerned I'll be going to Irish Water with the bills," said Tony.

"I assume they are going to pay for it. I think it is their responsibility," he added.

Meanwhile, it emerged there was confusion in the Ashwood estate as to who to contact about the emergency.

"My neighbour rang Irish Water about it but said he was told to ring South Dublin County Council, but he said all he got there was a machine," said Tony.

In a statement last night, Irish Water said the water main is around 40 years old, and the burst was likely due to "normal operational fatigue, progressive ageing and gradual deterioration of the pipe".

"There is no record of any previous bursts on this pipeline in this vicinity in recent years," it added.

"We recognise this is a difficult situation for affected householders and will work with the appointed loss adjuster to assess damages," the statement said.

It added that there was "no work done at this location by Irish Water or any other party within recent months".

While Irish Water said the pipe was repaired by 4pm with minimal effect on customer supply, this was disputed by locals.

cfeehan@herald.ie


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