Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Flood havoc hits Northern Ireland towns

A Young boy paddles his rowing boat up the main street in Strangford village in Co Down as the heavy rain storm and high tides floodb the village, the road was closed for several hours picture Bill Smyth

Heavy rainfall led to major disruption yesterday for thousands of people as widespread downpours affected many parts of Northern Ireland.

Roads were closed as persistent rainfall resulted in flooding in a number of areas.

The worst affected areas included Strangford, Downpatrick and Londonderry.

The torrential downpours have now sparked demands for an urgent review of flood protection to be implemented in parts of the province.

Several roads in Derry became impassable and housing estates waterlogged as relentless rain and high winds battered the north west yesterday afternoon. Parts of Banbridge and Downpatrick, meanwhile, were also affected by the wet weather.

Police urged motorists to drive with “extreme caution” as the Ballyhornan Road area in Downpatrick was affected by flooding near the junction with Edward Street.

Margaret Ritchie, MP for South Down, said a co-ordinated approach between agencies was needed to address the problem of flooding.

“There is an urgent need for a task force to deal with the flooding,” she said.

Last night a spokesman for DARD Rivers Agency said it took “pre-emptive” action after the forecast for heavy rain.

Derry Sinn Fein councillor Patricia Logue has now called for a review of flood protection for homes at Old City Close after local concerns.

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