BBC Home
Explore the BBC



Last Updated: Tuesday August 19 2008 15:27 GMT

The big clear-up after NI floods

Maddy chatting to Stuart

The heavy rain's finally stopped in Belfast after the severe flooding over the weekend.

But with hundreds of homes affected, the big clear-up's only just beginning in what is now officially the wettest August Northern Ireland has ever had.

Maddy's been finding out how people in the city have been coping.

Stuart's road during the floods
Stuart's road looked more like a swimming pool during the flood

"There's a big clear-up in Belfast after heavy rain caused severe flooding there over the weekend.

Most of the water has dried up now, but it's left mud and rubbish behind. In some places poo has been found after drains overflowed.

Stuart's street looked like a dirty swimming pool over the weekend. Almost a month's worth of rain fell in just one afternoon.


The water was almost up to his knees when he stood in the road, but his Dad and Uncle stopped it getting into the house by putting sandbags on the doorstep. And a skip parked in front of their house also prevented it getting too far up their drive.

Now, special teams are washing away the leftover mud and sewage with clean water, and checking the drains are working properly again.

Stuart's family used sandbags to try to stop the water getting into their home
Stuart's family used sandbags to try to stop the water getting into their home
Families just a few roads away have had much worse luck though.

You can see sofas, carpets, fridges and tables stacked up in front of nearby houses. They've all been ruined by the water, and people will need to buy new ones.


A few homes are so badly damaged, people can't live in them at all at the moment. They've got to stay with friends or in hotels until repairs are finished. That could take months.

Politicians are promising to give 1,000 to everyone affected. But many people here are worried that won't be enough.

It's the second time in 14 months that there has been bad flooding in Belfast. So some families have already had to spend lots of money repairing their homes."