Minister for Housing Darragh O Brien praises New Ross locals and emergency operations after fast action following flash floods

Housing Minister Darragh O Brien was in New Ross this afternoon as he meets some of the home & business owners who have been impacted by yesterdays floods.

The Minister praised the work of locals and emergency operations who worked tirelessly until midnight last night and again first thing this morning to help home owners and businesses impacted by yesterdays heavy rain and hail.

There was between 30mm and 40mm of fell in less than one and half hours resulting in serious flood damage in 30 homes and 38 businesses in the town.

Upwards of 12 roads and junctions around the New Ross town area have been severely damaged, and while they remain passable, motorists are urged to slow down and use extreme caution when navigating the town centre.Homeowners and business people whose properties were destroyed will be able to apply for funding to help with repairs.

The Department of Social Protection confirmed this morning that they have activated the Humanitarian Assistance Scheme in response to the flash flooding incident.  This is an income-tested scheme which provides emergency financial assistance to households who are not able to meet costs for essential needs immediately following flooding. The scheme aims to provide financial support to people who have suffered damage to their home, particularly where flood insurance is not available. It is designed to alleviate hardship rather than provide full compensation for damage.  Householders are encouraged to make contact to discuss their individual circumstances. Contact the National Community Welfare Service phoneline on 0818 60 70 80 or email cwswexford@welfare.ie

It is expected that Government will also announce a humanitarian support scheme for business, community and voluntary groups who have been affected by the flood and who are unable to secure flood insurance. The scheme once approved by Government, will be administered by the Irish Red Cross.

Wexford County Council is liaising with the Department of Enterprise on the scale of the impact to New Ross businesses.  The humanitarian scheme is particularly targeted at small business (up to 20 employees) and helps towards the costs of returning business premises to their pre-flood condition. Once the scheme is announced, details will be available on www.redcross.ie and notified on Wexford County Council’s website and twitter feed.

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