Met Éireann should have issued a Red weather warning for Cork and surrounding counties amid Storm Babet’s downpour, according to the Cork County mayor.
The Army has been deployed in Midleton, east Cork, due to severe flooding in homes and businesses, as well as damage to cars.
Frank O’Flynn told Newstalk Breakfast there has been 94 millilitres of rain in the last 24 hours.
“The weather warning, they got it wrong,” he said.
Met Éireann issued an orange weather warning for Cork, Kerry and Waterford and a yellow warning in surrounding counties on Monday to last from Tuesday morning to Wednesday.
“It should have been a Red alert – normally for a Red warning they have to consider closing the schools, businesses are more prepared.
Flooding inside shop in Midleton, more awful images still being shared after a terrible day in parts of the South. Really hope we don’t see another event like this soon but sadly they are becoming more likely and a tough few months again.
— Carlow Weather (@CarlowWeather) October 18, 2023
“Workers more than likely would have worked from home if they can and cars that were damaged would not have been damaged.
“If it was a red alert, it would have been far easier or local people.”
This accident occurred in east Cork when floods washed away a drain under a road.
Our infrastructure was not built for an era of climate breakdown.
Our best hope is a whole catchment approach to slow the flow and create a climate resilient environment. pic.twitter.com/YWJhX1BdGc
— LEE Forum (@_LEEForum) October 18, 2023
Mayor O’Flynn said this is some of the worst weather events in east Cork in living memory.
“It's an absolute disgrace,” he said.
“There are people there without power and I’d say we probably have 200 houses still affected.”
*Not my video. Sent via WA
— Tori Tops (@Just__Tori_) October 18, 2023
While Mr O'Flynn praised the work of the emergency services that helped those in affected areas, he said the level of damage could have been avoided.
“We had a very bad flood in 2015 and we were promised a flood alleviation plan would be put in place,” he said.
“We need that flood alleviation plan now – the time for talking is over.”
Officials have said they did “not expect” Storm Babet would lead to such severe flooding.
Main image: Flooding in Midleton, Co Cork. Image: Cork County Council.