25/11/2009

High Winds Tear Roof Off Dublin Apartment Block

Three apartment blocks in Dublin have been evacuated after high winds ripped the roof from the building this morning.

The incident occurred at an apartment complex at Carrickmines Manor on the Glenamuck Road at around 8.30am.

Gale force winds tore the roof from one of the building and landed in a nearby field, while the roofs of two adjacent towers were badly damaged and came away from their housing.

Residents of the evacuated blocks at Carrickmines Manor are being temporarily housed in a local hotel until an assessment of the damage and any further risk is carried out.

Gardaí and emergency services are currently at the scene. The area remains sealed off with residents preventing from returning to their apartments.

Over 20 people live in the block where the roof came off.

Met Eireann has issued another weather warning this morning Southwest to west gales or strong gales for a time today on all Irish coastal waters and on the Irish Sea.

Speaking this afternoon in response to the incident, Fine Gael TD Olivia Mitchell said it was little short of a "miracle" that nobody was injured.

“We must be grateful that nobody was seriously injured this morning in Carrickmines and it is imperative that Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council finds housing for those evacuated.

"However, this is the second such occurrence in Dublin South whereby roofing has been blown off a high rise apartment block and it raises real concerns over the safety of apartment blocks in elevated areas.

"I believe a full safety audit on all high rise buildings in elevated areas must be carried out immediately in order to avoid disaster in the future. We need to establish that all such buildings were finished to the relevant wind speed regulations, which apply at these elevations."

(DW/GK)


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