MPs to quiz rivers, roads and water agencies on economic impact of weekend floods

Politicians in Northern Ireland are to hold an emergency meeting today to discuss the impact of the weekend's floods.

Roads were closed and people evacuated from their homes on Saturday after heavy rain caused havoc across the country.

A busy underpass on a carriageway in Belfast had to be cordoned off after severe flooding. It was inundated with water when a nearby river burst its banks.

The Regional Development Committee is set to question officials from the Rivers Agency, Roads Service and Northern Ireland Water.

Committee chair Fred Cobain said: “When we look back at the weekend we should not forget that in addition to significant damage to private property, key parts of our roads infrastructure - the new Broadway underpass and roads around the international airport - were closed.

“This is not just a matter of inconvenience. It also has economic consequences.”

He said government departments and agencies should have plans in place to minimise the chances of flooding and the disruption caused by heavy rain.