After storm force winds batter the country Crossmolina in County Mayo experiences the worst flooding in the town for years.

Storm force winds have been battering Ireland, leaving one person dead, disrupting air and sea travel and knocking out power supplies. Many roads have become impassable and in some areas families had to leave their homes. Fifteen thousand homes were left without electricity supplies, mainly in the midlands and in parts of Leinster. Dublin Airport cancelled 89 flights and diverted 31.

Emergency services tried to minimise the damage in Crossmolina in north Mayo. However, over twenty shops, pubs and houses were flooded.

Twelve hours of torrential overnight rain left much of the centre of Crossmolina under water by day break.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer for County Mayo David Brady outlines the efforts undertaken to protect the town. Four streets are flooded with up to two feet of water.

Furniture shop owner Francis Grogan faced the heartbreaking site of a flooded carpet showroom with at least €200,000 worth of damage. In the lead up to Christmas, business should be booming but everything in the shop has been destroyed by the flood water.

Everything is gone.

Publican Noel Moffett said that he and his staff did their best to fend off the flood water but it was impossible.

Local politicians say that something has to be done to protect towns vulnerable to flooding. Fine Gael TD Enda Kenny said that there is a requirement for a ready made store of up to ten thousand sand bags. Fianna Fáil County Councillor Frank Chambers said that Mayo County Council along with the Office of Public Works (OPW) need to deal put a plan and money in place to deal with floods in the region.

The cost of the damage caused by the floods in Crossmolina is estimated to be well in excess of a million Euro. Residents now face the unpleasant and challenging job of removing contaminated water from their homes.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 3 December 2006. The reporter is Jim Fahy.