Water-Gate temporary flood defense system for Westmeath County Council
Athlone floods from the Shannon and has a long history of flooding. 29 flood records are listed in floodmaps.ie. The main flooding is from the River Shannon, but the Al River is another source of flooding.
Large sums of money are invested to reduce the hazard by structural measures. The main objective for these investments is to reduce the occurrence of floods: construction, modernisation of hydraulic structures (dams, weirs, sluices), slowing down the runoff… Floods result from a “natural” hydrological event that can sometimes be mitigated (construction of protective structures), but the risk of flooding remains.
It is widely accepted that any flood defence plan should complement these structural actions with measures to reduce the vulnerability of people and property. How? By protecting from floods the areas most exposed.
In the case of Athlone:
- Deer Park
- The Strand
- Griffith Street
Shannonbridge Highest Water Levels during the year.
In recent years, and in particular the period incorporating the end of 2015 and beginning of 2016, the flooding situation in Athlone and surrounding areas reached a new level of crisis. Proximity to the River Shannon, and incessant rainfall, contributed to uncontrollable water levels. The local belief now is that, what was once considered a ‘one in a hundred year event’ is now presenting with more regularity. The options appear to involve a long-term strategy for regulating River Shannon water levels, and a short-term focus on providing real protection at vulnerable locations in the Athlone region.
The recommended device is composed of 182.5 m Water-Gate© anti flood flexible dams, 100 cm high, ready to deploy and packed in 2 fast deployment containers. Using a forklift and only 3 people, the entire protection will be deployed in less than 30 minutes!
The versatility of Water-Gate© allows installation on any terrain and in the desired path. The dam conforms to the shape of urban obstacles: sidewalks, pavement, and walls…
All Water-Gate© dams can be attached together, regardless of their height, by means of integrated Velcro straps.
The protection can therefore easily be:
- Divided by multiples of 15.2m (15.2 m = the length of one barrier WL 3950)
- Lengthened in the case of subsequent purchases, whatever the Water-Gate© model chosen.
The “vehicles crossing” possibility allows vehicles to cross the barrier up to 20 cm of water.