Farm flooding advice as country on orange alert

As the country remains on an orange weather alert warning, key farming and flooding advice from the Office of Public Works (OPW) is to move machinery, feed, grain, pesticides and herbicides to a higher elevation.

Orange weather warnings are issued for weather conditions, which have the capacity to have a significant impact on people in affected areas.

Met Éireann issued a status orange alert for counties Dublin, Louth, Wexford, Wicklow, Meath, Cork, Kerry and Waterford with winds of up to 70km per hour predicted and gusts of up to 100km per hour forecasted.

The OPW is advising if farmers have a two-storey barn, the upper level makes a good temporary storage facility, it advises. It says to open gates so livestock can escape high water is also key.

“If water is rising, try to drive stock through water free of obstructions. Grazing animals swim well, but the greatest problem for them are fences and other obstacles. Long swims through calm water are safer than short swims through a swift current,” it says.

Farmers should leave building doors and windows open at least 50 mm (two inches) to equalise pressure and help prevent buildings from shifting, it adds.

The OPW also advises, if possible, to move motors and portable electric equipment to a dry location.

“Tie down lumber, logs, irrigation pipes, fuel tanks and other loose equipment or material. Secondary containment is another possibility for fuel tanks, as well as pesticide storage,” it adds.

In terms of keeping surface water out of wells, it says to use materials such as heavy plastic and duct tape to seal the well cap and top of the well casing.

An aerial view of the Midlands taken by the Irish Air Corps shows the extent of the flooding at Ballinasloe and Athlone. (Irish Air Corp Facebook page)

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