Written answers

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Flood Prevention Measures

Photo of Brendan SmithBrendan Smith (Cavan-Monaghan, Fianna Fail)
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74. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the proposals the Office of Public Works has to carry out essential drainage work in County Cavan; if he is aware of the serious problems caused for households and businesses in parts of County Cavan, particularly in the Crossdoney, Killeshandra and Farnham areas, due to recent severe flooding; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [45618/15]

Photo of Simon HarrisSimon Harris (Wicklow, Fine Gael)
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The specific areas mentioned by the Deputy are within the Drainage District of Cavan County Council. Drainage Districts are areas where drainage schemes to improve land for agricultural purposes were constructed prior to the Arterial Drainage Act, 1945. The statutory duty of maintenance for these schemes lies with the Local Authorities concerned.

The Office of Public Works (OPW) carries out its own programme of Arterial Drainage Maintenance to a total of 11,500km of river channel and approximately 730km of embankments around the country. These are arterial drainage schemes completed by the OPW under the Arterial Drainage Acts 1945 and 1995, whose purpose was primarily to improve the drainage of agricultural lands to enhance production. The Glyde & the Dee, the Inny and the Boyne Scheme include river channels within County Cavan. In accordance with its statutory requirements, the OPW maintains these completed schemes in proper repair and in an effective condition to the standard of the original scheme. The annual maintenance programme typically involves some clearance of vegetation and removal of silt build-up on an average five-yearly cycle.

The Government's core strategy for addressing those areas at most significant risk and impact from flooding is the Catchment Flood Risk Assessment and Management (CFRAM) Programme. Ballyconnell and Cavan Town are the two Areas for Further Assessment (AFAs) being assessed in County Cavan under the CFRAM Programme. These were deemed to be areas of potentially significant risk and impact from flooding under the Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment (PFRA) which was completed in 2011. The County Cavan AFAs are being assessed under the North Western – Neagh Bann (NW-NB) CFRAM study. Further information is available on the study website:

A national public consultation on the draft flood maps is ongoing and will run until 23December 2015. Details are available on the consultation website

Local flooding issues are a matter, in the first instance, for each Local Authority to investigate and address, and County Councils may carry out flood mitigation works using their own resources. The OPW operates the Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme for projects estimated to cost less than €500,000. The purpose of this scheme is to provide funding to Local Authorities to undertake minor flood mitigation works or studies to address localised flooding and coastal protection problems within their administrative areas. Further details are published on the OPW website .


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