Water restrictions continue to affect 'most of the county'

Water restrictions continue to affect 'most of the county'

Water restrictions continue to affect 'most of the county'

SUE DOHERTY

With water restrictions set to remain in place across most of Donegal this week, council officials have renewed their appeal to the public to identify leaks and conserve water.

Liam Ward, Director of Housing and Corporates Services, Donegal County Council, told the Democrat yesterday: "More than half of the homes and businesses in the county are currently experiencing water restrictions, while up to 20% of homes and premises were completely without water during the worst of the shortages on St Stephen's Night and Monday.

"We are currently experiencing huge water losses, with the Stranorlar Electoral Area, Glenties and Ardara among the worst affected.

"We hope to have water restored to everyone by today or tomorrow and the situation should ease considerably by the weekend. However, we need everyone's co-operation to help reduce the exceptional level of demand and to help sort out leaks.

"We are asking everyone to check their properties for leaks, especially the owners of private properties.

"We believe that, at this stage, most of the big losses are through leakages at private properties - whether from taps that have been left running, from burst mains which have not yet been identified, or from leaks that have not yet been repaired.

"We would also ask the public to please be patient with us. Our crews are working flat out, day and night, doing their utmost to repair burst pipes and leaks. We fully appreciate how difficult it is to be without water but our resources are stretched to their limits."

Con McLaughlin, of DCC Water and Environment Services, also emphasised the need to identify and repair leaks: "The important message here is that we wish to continue our appeal to the public to help eliminate wastage and conserve water.

"We are asking key holders - of all types of properties - to check their properties for water losses as soon as possible. The sooner that is done, the sooner we can reduce the exceptional demand for water and return to normality."

Water restrictions were in place on Tuesday night in following areas: The Rosses, Gweedore, Leitirmacaward, Ardara, Gortahork, Falcarragh, Creeslough, Dunfanaghy, Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Ballintra, Rossnowlagh, Donegal Town, Frosses, Mountcharles, Convoy, Castlefin, Raphoe, Lifford, Ballinacor, Tievebrack, Ballybofey, Stranorlar, Quigley's Point, Muff, Greencastle, Carndonagh

Malin Head, Three Glens, Momeen Group Scheme, Manorcunningham Rahan, Ballyboe, Scibley, Lismonaghan, Correnagh, Rockhill, Newmills, Conwall, Ballyraine and Ramelton.

There was an interruption to the Milford water supply on Tuesday but that was resolved during the day. Council officials expected that many of these restrictions would continue through to today.

- Do not leave taps running as this is counterproductive.

- Continue to check vacant properties where internal plumbing may have been damaged by freezing conditions. Ideally the water supply to vacant buildings should be turned off and systems drained of all water, e.g. where members of the public who are going on holiday during the coming months, they should turn off the water supply to their premises and drain all water out of the system before leaving the property.

- Farmers should check all field connections and turn off leaking drinking troughs. This has proven to be a serious problem in rural areas in recent years. Farmers should also check for burst pipes in farm buildings and burst hoses laying over ground.

- Caravan park owners should turn off the water supply to eliminate wastage, as many caravan parks are in remote areas where plumbing may be exposed and water losses can be slow to appear.

Report any suspected leaks on watermains or wastages to Donegal County Council on (074) 9172399.