Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 26 July 2014

Video: Heavy floods wreak havoc in Northern Ireland

Mark McDonnell with sandbags outside his house in Antrim

An elderly woman had to be rescued from her home as downpours caused flooding across Northern Ireland.

Counties Fermanagh and Antrim were worst affected as a deluge of rain washed away the last of the summer and led to several roads being closed.

Up to 30mm was believed to have fallen in some areas.

In the most serious incident, firefighters carried a 77-year-old woman to safety after her home at Edenduff Terrace in Antrim became flooded.

Andy Woods, the Fire Service station commander in Antrim, said the water affected several houses in the area.

“She is an extremely independent woman who insisted we rescued her cat before we rescued her,” he said.

“There was an awful lot of water coming down on to the cottages, with this lady's cottage being the worst affected.”

The woman was moved to a neighbour's house.

Several roads in the area — including the Ballymena Road at the Dunsilly roundabout — were closed for a time because of the deluge.

Other areas badly affected included parts of Tyrone and Londonderry.

Heavy rain and water run-off from fields caused problems in the Tempo, Ballinamallard and Fintona areas.

Walter Campbell’s workshop in Ballinamallard was left under several feet of water, and he fears it may put him out of business.

“It’s flooded for the third time,” he said.

“It is up to my knees and all the machinery has gone.

“It’s pretty tough because of the way things are at the minute. It looks like we’re out of business, basically.”

Another man affected was Willie Ferguson from nearby Ballycassidy, whose wife Georgina suffers from MS. His home was flooded in less than an hour yesterday.

Elsewhere, snow showers led to dangerous driving conditions in Derry.

The Glenshane Road was described as “treacherous” because of sleet and snow.

Last night’s big football clash between Glentoran and Linfield, due to be televised on Sky, also fell victim to the weather.

The Oval pitch in east Belfast was left waterlogged, with Irish League officials deciding to postpone the match around 4pm.

And in the Republic strong winds at Dublin Airport saw five flights cancelled and 14 diverted.

Inbound flights from Vienna, Warsaw, Barcelona, Berlin, Glasgow, Rome, Amsterdam, Beauvais and Stockholm were diverted to Belfast or Shannon, while an American Airlines flight inbound from Chicago was diverted to London.

Five outbound flights — to Manchester, Birmingham, Luxembourg, Edinburgh and London Heathrow — were also cancelled.

Background

Yesterday’s downpours brought an end to unusually mild weather for October.

And the signs for the near future do not look promising. According to weather forecasters, the terrible conditions will be followed by falling temperatures as the week goes on. Today is expected to have some bright or sunny spells but also further showers, which will be heavy at times with snow on some hills.

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