A Boil Water Notice has been put in place as a precautionary measure following a mechanical failure at Vartry Water Treatment Plant

29th Jan 2018 – Following advice from the Health Service Executive, Irish Water and Wicklow County Council have issued a Boil Water Notice for the areas supplied by the Vartry Water Treatment Plant.

The following areas in Dun Laoghaire Rathdown are included: Corke Abbey, Woodbrook Glen, Old Connaught Avenue, Thornhill Road, Ballyman Road, Ferndale Road from its junction with Old Connaught Avenue to Allies River Road, The Dublin Road from the junction of Old Connaught Avenue to Allies River Road, and all areas off these roads.

The Boil Water Notice has been put in place as a precautionary measure to protect approximately 65,000 people served by this supply following the mechanical failure of the chlorine booster at the plant. All water treatment at the plant must have adequate chlorine levels added to the water to make it safe to drink.

Irish Water will liaise with the HSE with a view to having the Boil Water Notice removed as soon as possible. Irish Water are carrying out chlorine dosing on the supply today and have put in place a water sampling programme to test the chlorine levels in the impacted areas.

In the meantime, all customers of this supply are advised to boil water before use until further notice.

Irish Water apologises for the inconvenience caused by the imposition of the boil water notice. We will continue to work closely with Wicklow County Council, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown and Dublin City Council who run the plant on behalf of Irish Water and the HSE to monitor the supply and lift the notice as quickly as possible.

Irish Water was recently granted planning permission to upgrade the Vartry Water Treatment Plant which will restore the plant and ensure it meets all drinking water regulations and safeguards public health. The contract to construct the upgraded water treatment plant is due be awarded at the end of 2018 and construction will take two years to complete. The existing water treatment plant will then be decommissioned.

For more information and additional advice, please call our 24-hour customer care line at 1850 278 278.

Water must be boiled for:

Drinks made with water
Preparation of salads and similar foods, which are not cooked prior to eating
Brushing of teeth
Making of ice – discard ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges. Make ice from cooled boiled water.

What actions should be taken:

Use water prepared for drinking when preparing foods that will not be cooked (e.g. washing salads)

Water can be used for personal hygiene, bathing and flushing of toilets but not for brushing teeth or gargling

Boil water by bringing to a vigorous, rolling boil (e.g. with an automatic kettle) and allow to cool. Cover and store in a refrigerator or cold place. Water from the hot tap is not safe to drink. Domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink

Caution should be taken when bathing children to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water

Prepare infant feeds with water that has been brought to the boil once and cooled. Do not use water that has been re-boiled several times. If bottled water is used for the preparation of infant feeds it should be boiled once and cooled. If you are using bottled water for preparing baby food, be aware that some natural mineral water may have high sodium content. The legal limit for sodium in drinking water is 200mg per litre. Check the label on the bottled water to make sure the sodium or `Na’ is not greater than 200mg per litre. If it is, then it is advisable to use a different type of bottled water. If no other water is available, then use this water for as short a time as possible. It is important to keep babies hydrated.

Great care should be taken with boiled water to avoid burns and scalds as accidents can easily happen, especially with children.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor successfully steers the Technological Universities’ Bill through the Dáil

The Technological Universities Bill has now completed all stages in the Dáil and moves a step closer to enactment.

The Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D. has secured the passage of the Technological Universities Bill through the Dáil last night.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor said, “Today marks a significant milestone in progressing this vital piece of legislation.   The Technological Universities Bill is a high priority for Government so I’m delighted to have steered the Bill successfully through the Dáil. I look forward to discussing the Bill with Senators in the coming weeks.

The legislation when enacted will underpin the development of a new type of higher education institution, building on the strengths and mission of institutes of technology to develop world class technological universities”.

She went on to say “The creation of technological universities provides the opportunity to drive regional development and provide more opportunities for individuals, enterprise and the community.   These institutions will have significant impact and influence regionally, nationally and internationally.”

The Bill is now scheduled for the next stage of the legislative process in the Seanad early next week.


Minister Mitchell O’Connor publishes Report on living conditions of College Students

Most college students feel like they ‘fit in’.

With 53% planning on continuing to study in some form after graduating.

Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D. today published the Eurostudent VI study, the sixth report of its kind into how students experience university life, while visiting GMIT Mayo campus Castlebar.

Over 20,000 students attending higher education institutions were surveyed as part of the report. Overall the report found:

• High levels of overall student satisfaction with the quality of teaching the timetabling of studies and the facilities of the institution.

• Furthermore, students appear to have a clear understanding of what is expected of them from their institution.

• Students also report high levels of ‘fitting into’ higher education and appear to have few doubts that higher education was the right choice for them. This is further demonstrated by most students reporting that they would recommend their choice of programme to other students.

If we are to have the best education system in Europe by 2026, we must ensure our institutions are responding to the experience of those that use them. Reports such as these give us an invaluable insight and will contribute to future policy making.

Publishing the report, Minister Mitchell O Connor said “having access to high quality data, and hearing more from students on their experience of higher education is critical to inform sound policy decisions to ensure we are doing the right things for our student cohort. This report gives us a student perspective or ‘voice’ which is of critical importance.”

In announcing the publication of the report, Minister Mitchell O’Connor commented:

“This represents a very useful study into the social dimension of student life, and it will inform what measures we can take to ensure student success, which has so many dependencies. A priority for me as Minister of State for Higher Education, is to provide target groups outlined in the National Plan for Equity of Access 2015-2019 with more opportunities to go to college and have a world class positive student experience while there.

I want to commend the efforts of the Higher Education Authority and Insight Statistical Consulting for the attention to detail as evident in this report. I wish to thank the higher education institutions for their co-operation in facilitating the online survey and especially the students who took time to complete the survey. It has become increasingly accepted that the student perspective or ‘voice’ is critical to inform sound policy decisions in the higher education field.

The findings presented in this report will be a valuable resource for all higher education stakeholders.”


This report, which presents the findings of the sixth Eurostudent survey of over 20,000 higher education students in Ireland, provides a wealth of internationally comparable demographic, economic and social data. This data provides insights into the quality of life of the increasingly diverse student population in Irish higher education.

Eurostudent is a network of researchers and data collectors, representative of national ministries and other stakeholders who have joined forces to examine the social and economic conditions of student life in higher education systems in Europe.

The main aim of the Eurostudent project is to collate comparable data from 26 countries on the social dimension of European higher education. Eurostudent is a network of researchers and data collectors, representative of national ministries and other stakeholders who have joined forces to examine the social and economic conditions of student life in higher education systems in Europe.

The Irish study is overseen by the HEA on behalf of the Department and was undertaken by Insight Consultants. This publication will include information collated from higher education institutes on the social dimension of higher education in Ireland as provided by a survey completed by students.

It focuses on the socio-economic background and on the living conditions of students. It also investigates other interesting aspects of student life such as international mobility and employment during term-time.

This report provides results from over 20,000 students attending higher education institutions in Ireland and provides insightful information relating to the demographic profile of students, course characteristic, entry routes, accommodation, employment and other relevant issues on student life. The information collated helps us to comprehend more succinctly the quality of life of the increasingly diverse student population in Irish higher education and how this influences their learning experience.

The findings cover areas such as demographics, course characteristics, disability, college entry route, income and expenditure, accommodation, employment and student.

Further details on the report can be obtained from the Higher Education Authority.

Link to the report can be found here – http://hea.ie/assets/uploads/2018/01/HEA-Eurostudent-Survey.pdf