Cork City businesses could be set to face another hurdle with the city council issuing an alert for possible significant flooding this week.
A tidal surge combined with strong south-easterly winds is forecast for Wednesday morning.
Cork City Council said these factors combined with a morning high tide. have the potential to cause significant tidal flooding in the city.
High tides are expected today and tomorrow.
However, the council said that these will likely result in only minor localised flooding along low-lying quays of the city.
The natural cycle of high tides is set to occur today at 5.09pm, tomorrow at 5.33am and 5.57pm, and Wednesday at 6.21am and 6.43pm.
John Minihan, of Minihan’s Pharmacy on Oliver Plunkett St, voiced his concern about Wednesday’s forecast.
Mr Minihan said: “This has become a fact of life. We never like it but we deal with it.
“This is coming at a shocking time. It’s difficult for businesses to have to deal with this during their small window of opportunity but that’s the life we live now. We’ll face this like we have faced everything else.”
Mr Minihan is calling on the public to support businesses at this challenging time.
“All we can do is call on the public to support the city centre,” he said. “One day’s trade could be the difference between businesses shutting and still being here this January. Nobody has a choice. The city centre is the heart and soul of Cork. It’s important that we keep that cultural, economic, and vibrancy alive.”
Eileen Madden, who owns Pro Musica on Oliver Plunkett St, said the effect of flooding on businesses is something they will never get used to.
“This is the last thing retailers needed after having so much extra stress,” she said. “These things are happening all the time but it’s not something we will ever get used to. The fact that businesses have been hit so many times is both shocking and terrible.”
She said the impact of flooding was worsened in previous incidents by cars travelling through the streets.
John Neville, who owns Neville jewellers on Winthrop St, said he hopes the predictions won’t come to fruition.
“Businesses are getting hammered,” he said. “The key for us is having a proactive approach rather than just reacting. The sandbags can make a huge difference. When the council gave us these before we didn’t throw the ones left over out because this was always going to happen again. Our hope is that this will just be a speed bump.”
Businesses and households are advised to take the necessary precautions to protect their property.
Cork City Council’s Flood Assessment Team said it is monitoring the situation closely and will continue to issue regular updates on the tidal forecast to its Twitter account (@corkcitycouncil) as well as the city council’s website.
Gel bags and sandbags will be available for collection at allocated times at Tramore Valley Park's Civic amenity site and South Link Road.
Gel bags will also be available at an assigned council depot on Anglesea Terrace. Collections times include today from 12.30pm until 6pm and Tuesday from 9.30am until 6pm.