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Dublin Floods Trigger Emergency as Bodies Found; FBD Falls

Dublin roads in some areas remain closed, public transport disrupted and stores shuttered, after rainfall caused flooding and two deaths.

Dublin City Council activated a major emergency plan after what it called unprecedented rainfall caused severe flooding. Dublin-based insurer FBD Holdings Plc dropped as much 3.9 percent to 6.1 euros and traded at 6.2 euros as of 1:13 p.m.

“One month’s rain has fallen in the past 24 hours leading to extensive flood damage,” said Eamonn Hughes, an analyst at Goodbody Stockbrokers in Dublin, in a note. “This adverse weather will likely lead to extensive flood damage property claims in the days and weeks ahead for the insurance industry.”

Rainfall stopped in Dublin by mid-morning and Ireland’s Meteorological Agency said it expects the capital to be mainly dry tonight, with a chance of heavy bursts of rain. One of the city’s biggest shopping malls, Dundrum Town Center, will be closed today as workers carry out repair works after parts of the complex were flooded, according to the center’s website.

“The worst of the rain storm has passed us for the moment,” said Tom Leahy of Dublin City Council in an interview with broadcaster RTE. “We’re in the recovery phase,” he said, adding hundreds of properties have been flooded.

The council’s Michael Philips told RTE that 50 millimeters of rain, almost a month’s worth, fell between 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. yesterday.

A policeman was swept away yesterday evening as he helped to direct traffic in Wicklow, south of Dublin. Police have found the body of a woman in a flooded flat in Dublin and that of another person in Wicklow, according to a police spokesman.

‘Extensive Damage’

“There is no doubt that flooding has already caused extensive damage to homes and businesses in the east,” the Irish Insurance Federation said in a statement today. The federation urged policy holders to contact their insurers as quickly as possible. An estimate of the cost of the floods won’t be available for at least three to four weeks, it said.

Concern about rising claims may weigh on FBD’s stock price today, Goodbody’s Hughes said. A spokesman for the company said it is too early to assess the impact of the floods on claims.

Parts of the city’s LUAS light rail system remain closed with much of the service in the south still down. Irish Rail said commuters on some routes should expect severe delays. Some services to Belfast are being held up by 30 to 50 minutes.

Jurors were advised not to turn up for duty in Dublin today after floods damaged electrical supply at the Courts of Criminal Justice, according to a statement from the Irish Courts Services today. No cases are being held at the affected criminal courts building today and arrangements have been made to deal with the workload at other courts.

Dublin’s main arterial roads have reopened while flooding is still being encountered in some areas such as near the N11 at University College Dublin, according to the police website.

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