Icy conditions prompts inter-agency water safety warning

Irish Coast Guard, RNLI and Water Safety Ireland issue cold weather warnings for water activities

With the current icy weather warnings in place throughout the country, the Coast Guard, RNLI and Water Safety Ireland have issued a joint water safety appeal urging people to be aware of the added danger at our aquatic environments and of additional safety considerations when on or near the water.

Due to the freezing temperatures, many inland bodies of water have frozen over at canals, lakes, ponds and flooded areas. As the thickness of this ice can vary greatly the strong advice is to stay off the ice. Be extra vigilant while walking beside bodies of water as walkways and paths can become extremely slippery and unsafe when icy. Keep pets and young children away from the edges.

Many people are expected to take part in festive dips. The three maritime organisations are asking people to check that they have the right information to safely enjoy these activities and that they know what to do in the event of an emergency. Cold water swims are very popular in the run up to Christmas and New Year. However, the current cold snap means that there are added risks to consider when taking part in these types of activities. This is particularly so inland. Avoid lakes that are covered or partially covered in ice.

  • In an emergency dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard
  • Have a means of calling for help, e.g., a mobile phone in a waterproof pouch and a whistle
  • Check weather and tides. Be particularly mindful of strong wind conditions.
  • When you go open water swimming, it is very important to acclimatise by entering the water slowly and allowing time for your body to get used to the cold.
  • To help yourself acclimatise, splash the cold water on your neck and face.
  • Warm up afterwards by putting on dry clothes quickly and wear a warm hat as soon as you get out.
  • Entry and exit points may be difficult in the sub-zero conditions so walk slowly to avoid slipping.
  • Avoid swimming in areas where there is ice.

Water Safety Ireland’s Deputy CEO, Roger Sweeney added ‘Children are naturally curious about walking on ice but parents should emphasize that it is not safe as the thickness can vary. This is why it so important that adults provide uninterrupted, responsible supervision beside any waterway.”

RNLI Water Safety Delivery Support Lisa Hollingum added: ‘Cold water shock is a very real possibility while winter swimming and dipping. Acclimatise before getting in, don’t stay in long and warm up as soon as you get out of the water. Look out for one another.’

Irish Coast Guard Head of Operations Gerard O’Flynn said, “Many people  are looking forward  to engaging in outdoor activities, including open water swimming or quick dips over the over the festive period, but please attend to your personal safety by carefully planning your intended activity.”

Irish Water reminds people to take some simple steps to protect their water supply during this freezing weather

 Monday, 12 December 2022: 

With the cold snap expected to continue for the next few days, Irish Water is reminding customers that there are some simple steps they can take to protect against frozen pipes and bursts – and stay safe, warm and comfortable this winter.

 

The sub-zero temperatures in recent days have increased the number of frozen water pipes and bursts. Our crews on the ground are working in partnership with Local Authorities nationwide to maintain essential water and wastewater services. We are also liaising with the National Emergency Co-ordination Group and other key utilities to ensure an appropriate response to the ongoing weather conditions.

Customers can also do their bit to help avoid expensive repairs and a disrupted water supply at home or in their business/farm by taking a few easy preventative measures. These include checking outside pipes that can become frozen and burst during periods of cold weather and, if possible, turn off water supply to these areas or to any unoccupied premises. Alternatively, if the water system is left operational, you may consider setting the heating to come on periodically at a lower temperature. This allows warm air to circulate, and will help prevent pipes and tanks from freezing in the cold weather.

We would also ask people not to leave taps running as this will not necessarily prevent pipes from freezing and can impact on your local water supply. 

Anthony Skeffington, Regional Operations Manager, Irish Water offered this advice:

“With the temperatures dipping below -5-degrees in some areas this week it is really important to continue the regular maintenance of your property, protect outside taps and farm troughs, and check empty premises. It also a good idea to familiarise yourself with your own internal water system and particularly how to turn off your supply at the stopcock so that you can protect your property in the event of a burst pipe. 

“We also recommend that people don’t run taps continually as this is not an effective way of preventing frozen pipes and can cause other problems such as frozen drains. It also puts further pressure on water supplies that are already challenged by the freezing conditions. For example we recently saw an example of where a single hosepipe left running overnight resulted in 60 people being without water.

“To help people avoid issues like this and stay safe, warm and comfortable during the cold snap we have lots of helpful advice on our website, www.water.ie/winterproofing. There is also advice on general winter readiness at www.winterready.ie 

 

The Irish Water Customer Care Team is also available to help 24/7 on 1800 278 278 and there is lots of advice on being winter ready on Twitter @IrishWater

 

 

 

 

Weather Warning for the week of 12th December 2022 – Met Eireann Report

Met Eireann have extended their Status Yellow Low Temperature/Ice warning for Ireland until 12:00 Friday 16/12/2022

All warnings at met.ie/warnings Be mindful of conditions on roads. Be Winter ready winterready.ie 

Icy conditions

  • Clear your windows and mirrors of any ice, carry a screen scraper and de-icer.
  • Remember it takes longer to stop in icy conditions. Manoeuvre gently, slow down and increase your braking distance or ‘safe space’ by leaving an extra distance between you and the vehicle in front.
  • Avoid too much steering, harsh braking, and acceleration.
  • Use the highest gear possible to avoid wheel spin. Select a low gear when travelling downhill especially if through bends.
  • Check tyres and replace them if the tread depth falls below 3mm. Check they’re inflated to the correct tyre pressure.
  • Familiarise yourself with any safety assist technology like Electronic Stability Control (ESC) or Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) in your vehicle.
  • Watch out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists and allow extra space when overtaking them.

Sleet and snow

There is also a risk of sleet and snow in parts of the north and west of the country. Drivers in these conditions are advised to:

  • Remove all snow from your vehicle before commencing your journey. Snow left on the roof will become loose and can drop onto the windscreen during braking, thereby causing sudden and severe restriction to your vision. It can also fall off during your drive and cause injury to pedestrians or a reflex action by another driver.
  • In snow and icy conditions, slow down. Use all controls delicately and leave extra distance between you and the vehicle in front.
  • In snow or sleet conditions, visibility will be reduced. Do not drive on the taillights of the vehicle in front. In heavy snow, use your fog lights, turn off your radio and open your window, so you can hear other traffic, especially at junctions.

Advice for pedestrians and cyclists

  • While walking on footpaths and in public places, or entering and exiting your car or truck, DO NOT underestimate the dangers of frost and ice.
  • Each winter slips and fall accidents cause serious injuries. Even when surfaces do not look especially icy or slippery, it is very possible that a thin sheet of transparent ice or “Black Ice” is covering your pathway putting you at risk.
  • Many slips and falls happen in places people regard as safe and secure, typically outside their front door on the doorstep, on the path or while getting out of the car.
  • If you are out walking in icy conditions wear appropriate footwear.
  • Visibility is reduced in hail, sleet, or snow so at night wear high visibility clothing or carry a torch and if you cycle make sure your bike is fitted with lights front and rear.

For advice on severe weather driving tips and weather updates, please see severe weather advice on or check out the RSA Facebook and Twitter pages.

See advice on driving in the RSA’s series of Severe Weather Warning videos created in collaboration with Teresa Mannion.

Be Winter Ready

The Be Winter Ready booklet is prepared by Office of Emergency Planning on behalf of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning, and contains important information which allows households to be prepared, stay safe and know where to find help should it be needed.

Monaghan County Council – Personal & Community Resilience Leaflet is available now!

Personal & Community Resilience is that individuals & communities can use their strengths to ‘Prepare’ for ‘Respond’ to and ‘Recover’ from emergencies.

Resilient communities can play a key role in the protection, rescue and care of any individuals within their community, who, because of dependency or disability, need particular attention during emergencies. Neighbours will be aware of any residents who are visually impaired, hearing impaired or with limited physical movement, whether by reason of age, illness (including mental illness), disability or other reasons, and can either assist such persons themselves or direct the emergency services towards them.

This preparedness enables the community to come together, utilising the locally identified resources, both personnel and equipment during the response to an emergency affecting their community. This response will complement the various emergency response agencies efforts in responding to the emergency.

Previous experience has demonstrated that communities who have spent time planning and preparing for an emergency are better able to cope and recover more quickly.

See links below:

Personal and Community Resilience Leaflet_English Version

Personal and Community Resilience Leaflet_Irish Version

 

PEACEPLUS – Public Consultation Events

Monaghan County Council wish to invite you to attend a public consultation event to hear your views on the development of a new Monaghan LCDC PEACEPLUS Local Community Action Plan.

The Plan will be based on community needs and will seek to overcome challenges/barriers across a wide range of areas that will promote peace and prosperity across the district.

Date Time Venue
Wednesday 14th December 10am – 12am Iontas Theatre, Castleblayney
Wednesday 14th December 3pm – 5pm Peace Link, Clones
Thursday 15th December 6pm – 8pm Hillgrove Hotel, Monaghan

Get involved by attending one of the following events:

There is no requirement to register your interest to attend an event.

If you require any further information on the consultation process, please contact Nicola Payne by telephone on 047 30500 or by email at npayne@monaghancoco.ie

 

Irish Water driving down leakage across Monaghan with upgrades on the horizon for Ballybay

Friday, 2 December 2022 – Safeguarding the water supply in Monaghan is a vital focus for Irish Water with further works planned in Ballybay as part of its programme to drive down leakage and reduce the number of bursts and unplanned outages impacting the community.

Irish Water, in partnership with Monaghan County Council, is replacing 525 metres of ageing water mains together with backyard service connections along O’Duffy Terrace to provide a more reliable water supply, improve water quality and reduce the amount of treated drinking water lost to leakage.

The works, which are due to begin this week, are a critical step in conserving our precious resource and reducing high levels of leakage which have been a significant source of disruption and outages for customers.

Backyard services are found in older areas, often installed to the rear of a customer’s property and typically made of cast iron or lead. Due to the age and deteriorating condition of the pipework, they are often a significant source of leakage and supply disruption for customers. Backyard services are usually shared, running through a number of neighbouring properties making it difficult to detect and repair leaks. Where properties share a connection, leaks and bursts affect all connected properties, resulting in low pressure and/or outages.

Irish Water would like to thank all customers in O’Duffy Terrace who have engaged with us and assisted us in the provision of our backyard services programme which will not only result in significant water savings but will also reduce the number of bursts and outages impacting customers. These projects are only successful if all customers on a shared water connection support and facilitate these vital works so that the old and leaking mains can be decommissioned.

Speaking about the benefits of the project, Declan Cawley, Leakage Reduction Programme Regional Lead with Irish Water, said: “Old backyard service connections are a huge source of leakage and water quality and continue to impact communities right across Ireland, causing low pressure and supply disruption. Replacing these old water mains and service connections in poor condition will eliminate existing leaks and significantly reduce the amount of clean drinking water lost into the ground. We would like to thank the residents in O’Duffy Terrace for facilitating these works and working with us to provide a more secure and reliable water supply for generations to come.”

These works will be carried out by Farrans Construction in partnership with Monaghan County Council on behalf of Irish Water and are due to be completed in March 2023.

The National Leakage Reduction Programme helps provide a more reliable water supply to Irish communities by reducing high levels of leakage and improving water quality. Since 2018, its delivery represents an investment of over €500 million to upgrade the underground water network across the country through the delivery of the Leakage Reduction Programme. Irish Water is also investing a further €250 million annually up to the end of 2030 directed at fixing leaks and replacing pipes to provide a more reliable water supply.

To find out more about Irish Water’s national programme of works to reduce leakage and improve Ireland’s water supply visit our Leakage Reduction Programme Page www.water.ie/projects-plans/national-projects/leakage-reduction-programme/.

                                             

PRESS RELEASE – MONAGHAN WOMENS ASSEMBLY RECEIVES FUNDING

Monaghan Women’s Assembly are delighted to announce a funding allocation of €22,000 from the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage.

Funding was received for three projects that will take place in 2023/2024: to Raise Awareness of Monaghan Women’s Assembly, to provide workshops on developing women’s skills such as public speaking, marketing and promotion, and to host a webinar for women in the form of a community consultation that will inform an awareness of the issues being raised across the board by female members of our community.

Cllr Cathy Bennett, Chairperson of the MWA stated “MWA are delighted to receive this funding to carry out three major projects over the coming two years.  MWA is going from strength to strength since its inception in 2021 and our Steering Committee will be working hard to oversee the completion of these projects, whose main aim is to try and encourage women to enter local politics”.

Aside from these projects, the MWA are also working in conjunction with the Western Midlands Northern Regional Caucus (WoMeN’s Regional Caucus) to deliver three more projects: the organisation of a co-ordinated ‘Invert your Council’ debate to coincide with International Women’s Day 2023, to develop a legacy project WoMeN’s Caucus Booklet and to organise and fund delivery of training, support and development, to all members of the caucus, which will help them in their role as public representatives.

Cllr Bennett went on to say that the objectives of the MWA, which is to support, enable and encourage women to get involved in, and stay in local politics, to provide a platform for local women to raise and discuss issues that impact on their lives with the female Councillors of Monaghan County Council, and to ensure gender equality and diversification is embedded in the policy and practices of the Local Authority in the future. For any queries on the MWA, please email womensassembly@monaghancoco.ie, and follow us on FB.

Public Consultation Notice – Data Sharing Agreement (DSA) for the sharing of LEO Suite of Services Data between Enterprise Ireland and all Local Authorities

Start date of consultation: 05/12/2022

End date of consultation:  02/01/2023

Monaghan County Council is intending to enter into a Data Sharing Agreement under the Data Sharing and Governance Act 2019.

The proposed agreement, a Data Sharing Agreement between Enterprise Ireland and all Local Authorities (including Monaghan County Council) will be available for public consultation at:

www.gov.ie/consultations/DSA/ for a period of 28 days from 30/11/2022 to 28/12/2022.

The public are invited to make submissions by email to consultations.dsa@per.gov.ie

Please include the full Data Sharing Agreement name “EILAS 018/211122 DSA for LEO Suite of Services Data” in the subject line of your email. Only submissions made to this email address will be accepted.

Once the public consultation period has expired submissions cannot be accepted.

Documents for reference are:

EILAS 018_211122 DSA for LEO Suite of Services Data

 

 

Irish Water calls on organisations in County Monaghan to apply for water conservation training

Irish Water is calling on companies of all sizes in County Monaghan to apply for its Water Stewardship Programme. It is Irish Water’s comprehensive training programme which helps organisations lower their water use, thereby reducing operating costs and protecting the environment.

More than 600 graduates from a variety of sectors including hospitality, education, manufacturing, transport, and more have now completed the programme to date as Irish Water welcomed 289 new water stewards at a recent ceremony at Trinity College Dublin.

The programme, the first of its kind globally, is an international best practice certification accredited by the European Water Stewardship Standard. The programme is endorsed by Ibec, Enterprise Ireland and Chambers Ireland, and supported by the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science.

Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme, delivered by Central Solutions and available for organisations in any sector, is fully funded by Irish Water and the Lean & Green Skillnet. Participants undertake two months of comprehensive virtual training to better understand how to conserve water in their organisation, including:

  • Creating a water map to visualise how and where water is used;
  • Reviewing their water monitoring strategy, and investigating how it may be updated/improved;
  • Identifying short payback water efficiency and conservation projects, such as rainwater harvesting;
  • Embedding governance processes to actively engage all stakeholders to conserve water;
  • Developing a water charter as an holistic approach to reducing water in their organisation.

Irish Water also recently launched its Annual Certification Scheme, whereby organisations have the opportunity to be recognised on Irish Water’s Wall of Honour. Showcased on its website, https://www.water.ie/conservation/business/water-stewardship/,  the Wall of Honour recognises organisations that have made massive strides in their water conservation efforts.

Companies across the board have already made significant progress in reducing their water use through participating in Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme, resulting in monetary and environmental benefits. For example, Dublin City University reduced its water consumption by over 50,000m3 annually, resulting in a saving of more than €100,000 in water costs. ABP also halved its water consumption, meaning it reached water conservation targets two years ahead of schedule.

Welcoming the new graduates, Yvonne Harris, Irish Water’s Head of Customer Operations, said: “More than 600 water stewards in organisations large and small are driving water conservation across Ireland. Through our programme, more than 1,500 new water conservation projects have been put in place, resulting in significant cost savings and benefitting the environment. Our programme is internationally recognised and is the first of its kind globally, and we encourage all organisations to apply online and take part.”

Ken Stockil, CEO at Central Solutions added: “As delivery partner for Irish Water, Central Solutions ensures participants in the Water Stewardship Programme understand the skills to reducing water, energy and related inputs across the four key principles of water stewardship, namely quality, quantity, governance and catchment. We welcome the new graduates and encourage companies across the board to get involved in the programme. Water stewardship is a collective and holistic approach that can achieve substantial economic, environmental and societal benefits for all water users.”

Those interested in participating in Irish Water’s Water Stewardship Programme can apply on Irish Water’s dedicated webpage: https://www.water.ie/conservation/business/water-stewardship/water-stewardship-training-programme/

Offer a home, offer hope for Ukraine – Monaghan County Council

Do you have a house, apartment or holiday home that’s not in use at the moment? Please consider offering it for those fleeing war in Ukraine.

Monaghan County Council is appealing for offers of unoccupied properties to provide temporary homes for Ukrainian people and families.

The call is part of a new government initiative, led by local authorities.

A tax-free recognition payment of €800 per month is available for properties used to house those arriving from Ukraine. This is an increased payment rate applying from December 1st 2022.

Under the new programme, Monaghan County Council will take offers of houses, apartments or holiday homes for temporary accommodation, liaise with owners to assess suitability, and arrange for their use by Ukrainian people and families.

Property owners can offer homes at offerahome.ie or by contacting the local authority in which the property is located. Find out more

This is not a call for shared properties. If you have a shared property or room to offer, please contact the Irish Red Cross.

What’s involved?

Step 1

Offer your property at offerahome.ie or by contacting the local authority for your property.

Step 2

The local authority will contact you to confirm some details, discuss the process with you and answer any queries you may have.

Step 3

If you are happy to proceed, and your property is suitable, the local authority will arrange to assess the property. This is because properties must meet certain minimum standards and the assessment also helps to ensure the local authority can find the best match for the property.

Step 4

The local authority will let you know if the property meets the required standard.

If the property meets the required standards, the local authority will begin work to match the property to the most suitable Ukrainian person or family in need of accommodation.

If the property does not meet the required standards, the local authority will give you further information on what the issues were and how they might be addressed.

Step 5

When a suitable Ukrainian person or family has been identified and has agreed that they wish to take up the offer, the local authority will notify you and they will facilitate contact between you and the person or family.

The local authority will also provide you with a template licence agreement, which you can choose to adapt or sign with the beneficiary before they move in.

 

After move-in and during the stay

Throughout the arrangement, the local authority will maintain contact with you and with the Ukrainian person or family and offer support if necessary.

 

Full information is available at offerahome.ie or by contacting Monaghan County Council –

Direct Line 047 73753

Contact Email:

lcolton@monaghancoco.ie

bclerkin2@monaghancoco.ie