Road Gritting Operations Continue In Clare

Over 550 kilometres of County Clare’s road network have been salted and gritted on a daily basis since the outbreak of the current cold period of weather in mid-December 2009.

[UKPRwire, Fri Jan 08 2010] That’s according to the Clare Local Authorities who confirmed that National Primary and Secondary Roads, along with heavily trafficked Regional routes, will continue to be treated as freezing conditions are expected to last into the early days of next week.

All main roads in the County are currently passable with the exception of the N67 (Lisdoonvarna to Ballyvaughan at Corkscrew Hill). Motorists are advised to avoid the main Doolin to Ennistymon road and the High Road in Doolin (near Hearrity’s Cross) due to extremely icy conditions. Also, the roads around Ruan are very dangerous and should be avoided. In West Clare, the Carrhue Hill (going up to Cooraclare GAA pitch) is very dangerous. Road users are advised to exercise extreme caution on all other routes.

Nora Kaye, Director of Services, Clare County Council stated: “The Council continues to implement the salting and gritting programme and have been salting since the beginning of the current cold spell, which began on 18th December. Seven salting vehicles are in operation as well as other methods, including the use of pick–up vehicles at area level. The main roads continue to be the Council’s priority and every effort is being made to keep these main routes passable. The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has issued safety advice as the cold weather looks set to continue and this advice should be heeded. The Council has been proactive in managing supplies of salt and a further delivery is expected in Limerick today.”

“People are reminded to check on older people, people living alone, people with disabilities and other vulnerable people, as this cold spell continues. Also, residents in housing estates are encouraged to clear their driveways and footpaths”, added Ms. Kaye.

The supply of grit to a number of locations around the county is currently being finalised and more details of the specific locations will be updated on the Council’s website.

Ms Kaye noted that weather conditions were unlikely to improve over the weekend. She continued: “There are still several days of cold weather to come, with Met Éireann predicting that this will last until at least the middle of next week and that temperatures may drop as low as minus 10?C at night. It is possible that further areas may be affected by low pressure or loss of supply, and that further areas may need to have supplies shut off at night to allow reservoirs to recover. If further supplies need to be rationed or shut off, we will advertise these details on local radio”.

The Clare Local Authorities, including Clare Civil Defence, Clare County Fire and Rescue Service and the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, are working with An Garda Síochána and the Health Services Executive to ensure a co-ordinated approach for dealing with the various issues. Links also have been established with Met Éireann, AA Roadwatch, RSA, the Department of Transport and the National Roads Authority to ensure that up-to-date information is made available to the Local Authorities.

Clare County Council Water Services update:
The extended period of cold weather has led to a 20 per cent increase in demand in all the Council’s water supplies. Most of the Council’s water treatment plants are at or near production capacity (see below water supply notices). Customers are requested to deal with leaks and bursts immediately, and to conserve supplies as far as possible. Water is rationed in some areas.

Clare County Council Water Services (the effects of increased demand are currently most acute in the following areas):
- Scariff & Tuamgraney: Supply restrictions are in place. At present the water supply is shut off between 1.00 am to 7.00am. This will reviewed later today. However, it is likely that the restriction will remain in place until early next week.
- Tulla: Supply restrictions are still in place. At present the water supply is shut off between 8.00 pm to 7.00am. This will reviewed later today. It may be necessary to continue shut-offs for some more nights, but the duration of shut-offs may be shorter.
- O’Briensbridge: Customers in elevated areas of the supply network, notably Kildoorus and Ardnataggle are experiencing low water pressure. In order to improve their supply Clare County Council are adjusting pressures in parts of the network.
- Cratloe: Parts of Cratloe are affected at different times, and the Council continues to seek leaks in the area and to balance the pressures between the different areas at different times of the day to improve water flows. A leak in the Ballymorris area has been fixed and this may lead to an overall improvement in the situation.
- Sixmilebridge: Water supply restrictions are in place. Water will be shut of between 8.00pm and 8.00 am until further notice. This restriction will remain in place until early next week, when a review of operations will be carried out.
- Newmarket-on-Fergus: Water supply restrictions are in place. Water will be shut of between 8.00pm and 8.00 am until further notice. This restriction will remain in place until early next week, when a review of operations will be carried out.
- Ballybeg-Rockmount area between Ennis and Clarecastle and higher elevated areas in the Ennis / Clarecastle environs may experience water supply loss or reduced pressure due to increased demand on the supply system. A number of properties throughout Ennis have no water supply due to stopcocks freezing. This situation is reflected throughout the county.
- Water demand to parts of North Clare supplied from the Ballymacraven treatment plant in Ennistymon is in excess of treatment plant capacity. Water conservation measures are in place, with some areas having a restricted or no supply on a rotational basis at night. Areas affected include Ennistymon, Liscannor, Lahinch, Lisdoonvarna and Doolin. Notifications of planned supply restrictions will be made through local radio advertisements.
- Watermain between Kilkee and Moyasta has been temporarily repaired, although supply from the main is restricted. The water treatment plant at Lislanaghan is in operation to cater for increased demand in the Kilkee area. Generally all areas in West Clare are receiving water, however some local restrictions in pressure and supply may occur.

Members of the public seeking advice pertaining to roads/water services related issues should contact their Local Area Office during office hours (9am-5pm). For out-of-office hours emergencies, persons may contact the Council’s 24-hour emergency telephone 087-4169496. Clare County Council’s website also is updated on a daily basis.

Local Area Office contact details:
• Ennis area office - (065) 6869534
• Ennistymon area office - (065) 7071017
• Kilrush area office - (065) 9051047
• Scariff area office - (061) 640815
• Shannon area office - (061) 362319
• Clare County Council Corporate Headquarters - (065) 6846337


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