Independent councillor Joe Bonner has blasted Uisce Éireann, the new name of Irish Water, for almost bringing Ashbourne and Ratoath to a commercial closure last week.

He told Meath Live, ‘There was a serious water outage in both places and that can happen, but how Uisce Éireann reacted to that was completely unsatisfactory.

‘The local retained firefighters were ready willing and able to distribute tonnes of water from tankers but Uisce Éireann would not give them the authority to do so, a decision that almost brought both Ratoath and Ashbourne to a commercial standstill.

‘Meath County Council then took the decision to sanction the distribution of the water anyway and as a body they often ship more than the fair share of criticism so it is only right it should be acknowledged they made the correct call this time.

‘In fact council staff went above and beyond their duty I know of some staff who worked hours they will not be paid for, and others who eat into their holiday time to help out.

‘Uisce Éireann appeared to have no contingency plan in place they may have changed their brand name but they certainly haven’t improved their service.’