Belvelly Residents Face a Further Six Month Wait Before Water Ban Is Lifted

By Seamus Whelehan


Nearly 300 Cobh residents affected by the country’s longest do not consume water notice may have to wait a further six month before it’s lifted.   The water restriction was imposed by Irish Water last July due to the extremely high levels of Iron in the supply for almost 80 homes in Belvelly.

County Engineer Kevin Morey told Labour Cllr Cathal Rasmussen at Tuesday’s Southern Committee meeting interim measures put in place seem to have worked.  He said it may be possible to lift the ban as iron levels have been in the acceptable range for a potable water supply for the past six weeks for most properties.  Cllr Rasmussen said he would be “very, very slow in lifting the ban.”  He said despite all the good work there are individual areas that are causing problems having spoken to Irish Water the consensus is they are going to pull back on lifting that ban.”

The restriction was briefly lifted last November but quickly re-imposed by the HSE, after some properties reported intermittent problems with elevated iron levels.   The restrictions mean that the households impacted cannot use the water for drinking, or in the preparation of hot or cold drinks and food, brushing teeth or making ice.  A project to install a new water main piping clean water to 76 homes on Great Island is expected to be in place by October.   The new ductile pipe will run for 3 km from Belvelly to Ticknock Hill.   The affected line running from Slatty Bridge to Ballard forms part of the Tibbotstown public water supply, which services the Belvelly area.

Chlorine levels have been boosted to replace the chlorine taken out by the iron in the supply and PH correction at the treatment plant to help reduce the corrosion of the line.

Labour Cllr Cathal Rasmussen said since the short term measures were deployed “in some areas the water has improved and in other areas it has gotten worse.”   He said “the problem is that the water tastes of chlorine”