UP to 150 residents in Croom remain on a boil water notice – four months after it was initially issued by Limerick County Council.
They 50 households - many of them consisting of young families – have been purchasing water since the boil water notice was implemented in June and it could be a number of weeks yet before the matter is resolved.
Eamonn and Annette Quirke of Carrigeen, Croom along with their daughter Aine O’Rourke and husband Paddy who also live locally have all been buying water in recent months.
“Aine has a new baby girl of six months old – her first child - you know now making up bottles and things like that you have to have to have the right water. It’s tough going,” said Eamonn.
“We have been in Carrigeen for 26 years. There has been no trouble with the water, never. We have had very good service up until now in fairness. They are all asking when is it going to be fixed and they are buying water as well,” he continued.
Local councillor, Pat Fitzgerald, raised the issue at the Rathkeale area county council meeting.
“I can understand the residents’ predicament. This is a major concern for young families,” he said.
According to Kevin McMahon, area engineer for water services for the Rathkeale area, during the heavy rain in the summer there were complaints of cloudiness in the water which were investigated by the council under the guidance of the HSE and the EPA.
“It’s a shallow well. During the very heavy rain we had back in the summer we had an incident of the water ingressing into the well. When you get that you obviously have a danger of getting contaminants from the ground so when that happens we have to put a boil notice on it,” he explained.
“We have dug a new borehole in Skagh and we are looking at providing for a new supply to Carrigeen,” he added.
Testing will be on-going all this week and possibly into next week to establish the suitability of the well at Skagh.
“Once we show that the well is suitable it will then have to progress to construction so you are looking at laying mains and it will also have to go to Part 8 planning as well and that can take about eight weeks in itself,” Mr McMahon continued.
“We would have two boreholes – one in Skagh and the one at the bypass which would be supplying Croom, Carrigeen, Banogue and the surrounding areas.”
Cllr Pat Fitzgerald said it is hoped that the results from the tests at Skagh “will ensure that the almost 50 householders will be able to use their domestic water and bring their family life back to normal conditions especially for families with young children and babies”.
“We are coming into the Christmas period which is a very important time in family life - many households have visitors coming from abroad. It is an inconvenience that in some cases households may not have the basic facilitiies in their house to carry out simple everyday tasks.”
According to the independent councillor, the population increase in Croom has also put extra pressure on the water supply in the area.
“The area has grown through the years and become more highly populated. The piping system was only catering for a localised community and now this area has developed,” he explained.
“The residents have been very, very, understanding,” he added.