Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien TD has criticised the Housing Minister for failing to take responsibility for the boil water notice which has been imposed in the greater Dublin area
Today Irish Water told the Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Planning & Local Government that work to upgrade the Leixlip water plant, which is the cause of a large-scale boil water notice will not be completed until next year.
Speaking after today’s meeting, Deputy O’Brien said, “Minister Murphy failed to step up to address the situation where hundreds of thousands of people were forced to boil their water for routine household duties, and here we are now, back at square one. The Minister should have intervened and taken action, but he didn’t and now over 600,000 people are inconvenienced again.
“It’s less than a fortnight since the last boil water notice was lifted. This is a ridiculous situation for a first world country to find itself in and there are serious questions for Minister Murphy to answer. There has been a real breakdown in confidence with households now dependent on bottled water to cook with and drink.
“It’s clear that lessons have not been learned from previous incidents and that warnings from the EPA as far back as March were not heeded. Minister Murphy needs to take control of this very serious issue – or people’s health will be put at risk.
“It’s highly inexcusable that this has happened again, and urgent action must be taken to and prevent similar incidents in the future”, concluded Deputy O’Brien.
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has criticized Irish Water for their failure to implement warnings from a March 2019 EPA report which led to last week’s Boil water notice in the Dublin area.
Some 615,000 households were affected by the notice due to issues with the Leixlip Water Treatment Plant. The comments come after a detailed EPA review of last week’s incident.
Deputy O’Brien said: “The review clearly points to serious failings by Irish Water to heed warnings from the EPA as far back as March. The result has been massive disruption to hundreds of thousands of households and businesses. The report found that Irish Water and Fingal County Council had failed to implement the main recommendations of the EPA’s previous audit of Leixlip Water Treatment Plant in March 2019.
“In particular there was a failure to install automatic shutdown when critical plant alarms are not responded to, as previously recommended, which was a contributory factor to the incident. I am pleased to see that the automatic shutdown system has now been put in place, as was recommended last March. It is just a pity that it took the events of last week to make this happen.”
“Next week officials from Irish Water are due before an Oireachtas committee. I will use this opportunity to grill them over why these recommendations were not acted upon in a timely manner. Furthermore, what steps have Irish Water taken to ensure the problems will not emerge again and that the EPA report will be fully implemented, particularly the recommendation to improve and enhance the Leixlip plant by including Ultraviolet technologies in the water treatment process. Minister Murphy needs to take responsibility and ensure Irish Water for fills its duties and have the resources to do so. ” concluded Deputy O’Brien.
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has criticised the government following news that the number of homeless children in the State has reached the highest ever level.
The number of homeless people in the State according to latest official figures show 10,397 people are currently living in emergency accommodation.
The figures show an increase of 59 people last month compared to statistics from August, an average increase of around two people every day.
Some 3,873 children are now living without a home in Ireland, according to the Department of Housing homeless statistics for September.
Deputy O’Brien said: "This government continue to fail in one of the most basic needs for our people, a safe and secure home. Rebuilding Ireland is failing our children and change is now needed.
“This is the highest ever number of children in emergency accommodation to date and have passed a previous peak of 3,867 children in July 2018. The number of adults recorded as homeless also increased slightly up to 6,524 in September.
“There were 4,370 adults and 2,872 children homeless in Dublin and there are now 148 people living in emergency accommodation who are 65 years of age or older, the figures show,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.