Town Council staff battled to repair about 40 water mains leaks around Carrick-on-Suir that were caused by the big freeze and subsequent thaw over Christmas.
Town Engineer Eoin Powell reported to Carrick Town Council's January meeting that most of the leaks were found in council housing estates in the town. About a quarter of the problems were caused by ballcocks in attick tanks, one third of the remainder of the leaks arose in pipes that had no lagging insulation and rest had lagging but still froze because temperatures dropped so low.
Unlike other areas, he said Carrick-on-Suir was at no stage without water during the post-Christmas water crisis though the Council had to shut off the water supply in some estates over two nights while leak repairs were being carried out.
"On the first day we shut off the water supply from Lissadell to Cregg Road and on the second day it was only from Lissadell to the Fire Station. In comparison to other local authority areas we did exceptionally well," he told the Council last week.
Mr Powell also revealed that a water conservation survey carried out in the town about five to six months about found that about 29% of the town's water supply was lost through wastage due to water mains leaks and other problems.
Before the big freeze, the Town Council identified 35 leaks in the water supply system, 25 of which have now been repaired and the ten remaining will be repaired in the next six week.
His report to the meeting was made during a discussion on a motion tabled by Cllr Margaret Croke calling on the Council to give adequate notice of water supply cuts, to ensure that water pipes in Council homes are lagged to prevent them freezing and to review the town's main water pipes and fittings.
Tributes were paid by councillors at the meeting to the water leak repairs work carried out around the town by Council staff over the Christmas holiday period.
Mayor of Carrick-on-Suir Cllr Richie O'Neill praised the quick response of Council outdoor staff to a request he made to come to the aid of a man suffering from cancer, who encountered water supply difficulties. They worked day and night and even worked on Christmas day to repair leaks, he said.
"There is a shortage of money but the Council came up with money somewhere over Christmas to look after the people of the town," he said.