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bit of weather

The aftermath: "Nobody in the city can ever recall such severe flooding"

The combination of torrential rain, high tides and strong winds has caused major problems in Limerick city.

imageLarge waves batter the coastal town of Lahinch in Clare (Niall Carson/PA Wire)

A MAJOR CLEAN-UP operation is under way after parts of the country were badly hit by severe flooding.

Strong winds coupled with high tides to cause flooding in many areas along the west coast, with Limerick particularly badly affected.

Sixty people had to be evacuated from their homes after flood water rose to several feet high in parts of Limerick when the Shannon burst its banks on Saturday. Several hundred other people had to be helped by emergency services and volunteer teams.

(Video: Shy Sports/YouTube)

City officials said that most of those evacuated from their homes spent the night with relatives while accommodation was provided for the remainder.

The flooding in the city was described as unprecedented; flood defences had been put in place but were unable to cope with the combination of torrential rain, high tides and strong winds.

Water levels remain high in the King’s Island area and the worst affected areas of the city have been cordoned off.

“Nobody in the city, not even the oldest resident of King’s Island, can ever recall such severe flooding,” said Limerick City and County Manager Conn Murray.

imageCivil Defence  help evacuate residents from St Mary’s Park, Limerick (Pic: Sean Curtin)

“We had our preparations made and had been working to shore up defences for days in the areas considered most at risk of flooding in the city and county but the volume of water was such that many of our defences were simply unable to cope”.

Murray said that many residents, particularly the elderly, had experienced a great shock.

“The tremendous public spirit shown by the people of Limerick city has been of great benefit to the state agencies including the fire and rescue service, the ambulance service and the Gardaí in trying to deal with the situation,” he said.

The orange alert national warning put in place by Met Éireann has now ended with today forecast to see strong winds but none as strong as the storm-force winds of the past 48 hours.

imageA dog makes his way home through a flooded street in Limerick city last night (Pic: Niall Carson/PA Wire)

Photos: Rescue efforts under way after severe flood emergency >

Read: Batten down the hatches: Storm-force winds batter the country >

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