Study on im­pact of Louth wa­ter out­age

Mid Louth Independent - - NEWS - By FIONA MA­GEN­NIS

THE Cen­tre for Fresh­wa­ter and En­vi­ron­men­tal Stud­ies at Dun­dalk In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy (DkIT) is un­der­tak­ing a project to in­ves­ti­gate the im­pact that the ma­jor wa­ter ser­vices out­age in Drogheda last sum­mer had on the com­mu­ni­ties and busi­nesses in the af­fected area.

The Staleen Wa­ter Treat­ment Plant (WTP) pro­vides drink­ing wa­ter to ap­prox­i­mately 90,000 peo­ple lo­cated in the town of Drogheda and ar­eas of south­ern County Louth and east­ern County Meath.

Disas­ter struck on the af­ter­noon of Thurs­day 20th July 2017 when a ris­ing main wa­ter pipe burst caus­ing a wa­ter ser­vices out­age.

Ir­ish Wa­ter un­der­took a se­ries of re­pairs re­sult­ing in op­er­a­tions re­turn­ing to nor­mal on the evening of Wed­nes­day 26th July, with nor­mal wa­ter sup­ply to com­mu­ni­ties re­stored over the fol­low­ing days.

The new project to de­ter­mine the im­pact on the lo­cal com­mu­nity is funded by the Na­tional Wa­ter Fo­rum and the Public Wa­ter Fo­rum, and will iden­tify:

The time­line of events lead- ing up to the restora­tion of wa­ter ser­vices;

The per­cep­tion of man­age­ment re­sponses to the sit­u­a­tion and the key en­gage­ment ac­tiv­i­ties which were per­ceived to be either suc­cess­ful or un­suc­cess­ful.

The project will be un­der­tak­ing a se­ries of ini­tia­tives to gather opin­ion on the wa­ter ser­vices out­age and how in­for­ma­tion was com­mu­ni­cated dur­ing the out­age pe­riod.

Th­ese ini­tia­tives will in­clude on­line sur­veys, door-to-door sur­veys, in­ter­views and a num­ber of fo­cus group meet­ings. Mem­bers of the project team will be ac­tively en­gag­ing com­mu­ni­ties in ar­eas af­fected by the wa­ter out­age dur­ing the pe­riod 15th-30th Novem­ber 2017.

Founded in 2005, the Cen­tre for Fresh­wa­ter and En­vi­ron­men­tal Stud­ies (CFES) is an ac­tive and vi­brant re­search cen­tre within the School of Health and Science in Dun­dalk In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy (DkIT).

For more in­for­ma­tion or to be in­volved in the project, please con­tact the project lead, Dr Alec Rol­ston: alec.rol­ston@ dkit.ie

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