Belfast floods

The picture in this BBC report is of a street not very far at all from where I live in Belfast. Have just spoken to one of my housemates who informs me that in places the Castlereagh Road is waist deep in water. I’m told that the Woodstock Road is fine from Redcar Street towards the City and Loopland Park away from it, but that everything between is flooded.

  • sean og

    I’ve just driven from Strandtown to the Ormeau Rd. Noah would feel at home. Heavy flooding all over the place but worst at Holywood Rd and the side streets behind the Strand cinema, Dundela, Ladas Dr, Mongomery Rd, Bells Bridge Round about, Mt Merrian, Ravenhill Park Rd and Park Rd. A 10 min journey took an hour with several u turns and diversions. I’ve never seen it as bad. The traffic situation was getting worse with cars breaking down and drivers stranded inside.

  • snakebrain

    Hmmmm

    Perhaps we do need some costly investment in our water infrastructure after all…

  • Comrade Stalin

    I have never heard of flooding in these parts of Belfast before. Thankfully up here in Newtownabbey it’s dry, even along the shore road at the coast where you might normally expect to have problems.

    I wonder if this is a water infrastructure problem or not ..

  • snakebrain

    I reckon they’ve blocked the storm drains to soften us up for the bills. Where’s my tin-foil helmet?

    Seriously, what’re your thoughts Comrade?

  • overhere

    Can you send some down here to Kent as I am up every morning at 6am watering the allotment before I go to work. I have arms like Popeye now as we are not allowed to use a hose and have to water by watering can.

    Does anyone else thing the BBC weather site on the web is totally useless, here I was hoping for some rain today but now it has changed for the second time in about 30 minutes and no rain until Friday 🙂

  • DC

    Michael,

    Having driven a journey from Downpatrick into Belfast, making a U-turn on the Knock dual carriageway via Castlereagh Road then via Upper Newtownards Road into Belfast, I can say that my driving experience was frightful.

    On the Knock dual carriageway cars were submerged in water levels upto the windows, thus knocking out some engines of those cars whose drivers felt bold enough to pass through it.

    The road out of Downpatrick, the A7, was an absolute disgrace, what with debris and severe flood planes on most of the journey into Belfast. Not to mention the displaced manhole covers, making it lethal at points.

    Weather patterns are certainly changing and the system we have, be it reservoirs to road infrastructure and drainage, is no longer suitable if Northern Ireland continues to experience these sort of conditions.

    Yes, the knives will likely be out for underinvestment claims and searching for who is to blaim in order to cover repairs to homes and so on; but the sheer volume of rainfall was enough to render any functioning existing system severely inadequate.

  • Comrade Stalin

    My thoughts are that the areas of East Belfast which are flooded are fairly well uphill of the city centre, so the water should flow downwards. I guess the areas involved are natural depressions and the water is flooding into them. It’s possible that the ongoing works to upgrade the sewers are actually reducing their capacity ?

    I’m quite close to the loughshore out here in Whiteabbey, which has flooded in the past (in the village) but has not flooded up where I am.

    The BBC website when I saw it last night (before there was any rain) predicted rain all this week, all the way through to Friday. I checked the Met Office website and their predictions were the same, I imagine the BBC’s weather comes from there.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Weather patterns are certainly changing..

    Please do not start blaming this on global warming. Floods have happened since time immemorial. I live near to a spot which has a history of flooding, and today it is not flooding despite the rain; so this seems to be a combination of localized weather conditions and bad sewerage in that part of the country.

    I noted your reports that the Knock dual carriageway is flooded. There’s definitely something wrong there. Most of that road is on high ground. Water should be running down it. The only explanation is that the sewers have failed.

  • austin

    Did you see Michael Copeland’s face on Newsline when the ever knowledgeable Noel Thompson referred to him as an MLA? Face like thunder or what..

    He’s invited Conor Murphy down to the Cregagh tomorrow to get a bollocking unless Murphy can give an assurance that he’ll get the bonfire wood dried out in time for the Twelfth.

  • Yer Woman

    What parts of Cregagh were hit folks? The entire road or just the estate?

  • oops

    Clearly a sign of God’s wrath at Ian Paisley for installing Klingons in the East Wing of Parliament Buildings!

  • oops

    (a snippet brought to you by the UUP Spokesperson for Better Weather, David McNarry)

  • Cruimh

    Speaking to a friend in the USA about this – he sent me this – thinks it was by Maurice Craig

    The red brick will bleed and the rain it will weep
    And the damp Lagan fog lull the city to sleep
    It’s to hell with the future and live on the past.
    May the Lord in his mercy be kind to Belfast

  • perry

    austin

    Michael Copeland seems to be having problems accepting the fact that he was not re-elected during the last election.

    He can’t even bring himself to take down the sign over the uup offices on the A/bridge Rd – Michael Copeland MLA.

    Ahhhhhhhh..

  • willis

    Congrats to UTV for their helicopter shot. Anyone know if it has been youtubed or is on flicker?

  • Alan

    This was clearly a very localised rainstorm – certainly heavy rain elsewhere, but nothing like the situation in east Belfast.

    At the top of the Ormeau the rain came down in torrents. Some years ago, I was in Canada when a twister touched down less than half a mile away. Then, there was localised flooding, but the rain was no way as heavy as that of yesterday.

    The surge was so significant that it pushed out of a man-hole sewer at Stranmillis and tore up the surrounding tarmac

  • Bemused

    I have travelled widely throughout Asia, Africa, Australasia and the Americas – yesterday’s rain was the most intense that I have ever witnessesed ANYWHERE. It’s hard to exaggerate the volume of water that fell over East Belfast.

  • Aquifer

    “Please do not start blaming this on global warming.”

    Why not? More heat, more water vapour, more energy, more turbulence, more storms and torrential rain.

  • willis

    Stand by for condemnation of Sodom and Connswater from the prophets in Ballymena.

  • Jamie Gargoyle

    Definitely odd – one of my Dad’s colleagues in an office near Ladas Drive waded out to rescue a woman in a stalled car with the waters rising, and a washing machine was spotted floating down the Saintfield Road (it made its escape from outside Blackwoods electricals – must’ve been the styrofoam that let it float, but there must’ve been at least a few inches of water to let it get any distance…)
    Odder still, the usual city flash flood spot – the Lower Ormeau – seems to have escaped unscathed.

  • moochin photoman

    Photos from about an hour after the deluge………didn’t go out in it, cameras isn’t waterproof!!

    Michael Copeland…….

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/23386031@N00/542683873

    Ladas Drive……….

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/23386031@N00/542786245

    Gibson Park………..

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/23386031@N00/542785410/

  • Concerned Loyalist

    We are in desperate need of investment in our water and seweage systems, in the Greater Belfast area in particular but in areas of the country too. The scenes in East Belfast yesterday were a disgrace for a supposedly “developed” country. About 3 years ago, after heavy downpours in the Strand Road/Waterloo Place area of Londonderry City Centre, I remember wading through knee-deep water to try and catch my train home from uni at Foyle Street. It’s not just confined to Belfast then and it’s not a new problem either, it’s an issue that needs to be addressed by our politicians and they need to take action now.

  • Pounder

    From what I’d read in other sources, the BBC i think, the downpour was so sudden and heavy that no modern sewer system could have coped with it.

    That said my heart does go out to the people in the parts effected. Many didn’t have insurance and those that do will probably get hit was act of god. I am lucky enough to live in one of the few east belfast streets not hit bad.

  • McGrath

    We are in desperate need of investment in our water and seweage systems, in the Greater Belfast area in particular but in areas of the country too. The scenes in East Belfast yesterday were a disgrace for a supposedly “developed” country. About 3 years ago, after heavy downpours in the Strand Road/Waterloo Place area of Londonderry City Centre, I remember wading through knee-deep water to try and catch my train home from uni at Foyle Street. It’s not just confined to Belfast then and it’s not a new problem either, it’s an issue that needs to be addressed by our politicians and they need to take action now.

    Posted by Concerned Loyalist on Jun 13, 2007 @ 04:08 PM

    I personally cant believe this thread didn’t gain more traction. Anyway.

    Unless East Belfast has suddenly found itself below sea level (which it isn’t), there is no reason for streets thereof to flood. The bottom line is the DOE already has a plan for draining East Belfast more rapidly, the real question relates to this new devolved government and its effectiveness in turning plans into reality.

  • catch my train home from uni at Foyle Street

    No wonder you were having so much trouble if you were trying to catch a train at Folye Street. The train station is on Duke Street.