Torrential rain causes havoc on Dungannon roads

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Torrential rainfall has led to widespread flooding, damaged property and impassable roads across the wider Dungannon area.

Waters subsided after Tuesday’s flash downpours when 63% of August’s average rainfall fell in the space of a few hours, but rose again on Friday when the heavy rain returned.

Parts of roads collapsed and sinkholes appeared because of blocked gullies.

Dungannon police reported that drivers and passengers had to be rescued from cars that were almost completely submerged by the floods.

“Ourselves, Fire service and Ambulance service have dealt with numerous incidents of vehicles being driven through ‘large puddles’ that have turned out to be anything but”, they said.

Ballygawley Roundabout was flooded due to trapped debris in a gully, while blocked river tunnels in other parts of the district led to collapsed verges and dangerous driving conditions.

SDLP Councillor Sharon McAleer said she had been inundated with phone calls from distressed householders coping with the flooding, and was liaising intensively with Transport NI and other agencies.

“The heavy rainfall has caused great distress to many people throughout the Clogher Valley Area, and numerous areas of flooding developed”, she said.

“The emergency services must be commended for their quick response and they had numerous call outs in a short space of time. Transport NI and rivers agency were very busy in the Ballygawley area and beyond and managed the many flooding issues efficiently and continued throughout the week.”

The Clogher Valley representative said she witnessed at first hand the benefits of the flood alleviation wall in the area of St Ciaran’s College.

Alan Walmsley, Assistant Chief Fire Officer at the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service, said across NI firefighters rescued 93 people who were trapped either in cars or their properties.