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Renewed warning on drink driving

As we head into the New Year, An Garda Síochána and the RSA are renewing their appeal to drivers to be responsible in relation to drinking and driving. Provisional figures indicate that since December 1, when the Christmas and New Year anti drink driving campaign was launched, there has been an increase of 34% in the number of arrests on suspicion of driving under the influence, a total of 738 compared to 549 for the same period in 2015. An Garda Síochána are warning drivesr that intoxicated driving will continue to be targeted by on a 24/7 basis, including the morning after, and appeal to every driver to be responsible and never, ever drink and drive. Assistant Commissioner Michael Finn said, “Tragically, there have been two fatalities over the past seven days, a motorcyclist on Christmas Day and a driver on St Stephen’s Day. On Christmas day alone 14 drivers were arrested by gardaí on suspicion of intoxicated driving. It …

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A happy Christmas for traders

TRADERS in Clare say that Christmas 2016 was quite good for them, providing some evidence that long-sought economic recovery has reached the county. Paul Queally of SuperValu in Kilrush and Killaloe felt that December 25 falling on a Sunday was helpful, as it changed how people spent. “In comparison to other years it was favourable, slightly up on previous years. It often is like that when you have a full week running into it. When it is like that, it tends to be busier. It’s a bit more relaxed, people can remember everything they are looking for and there isn’t as much of a rush.” While he believes this side of the country is still lagging behind the east, he feels that things improved in Clare a little this year. “I would say it has been quite good this year, probably the best for a few years.” Audrey Flynn of Ennis Electrical also felt it had been a fairly good …

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Six drink-driving detections over Christmas

SIX people have been detected drink driving in Clare over the Christmas period, with two of these being during the day time. Of the six drink drivers, one was detected at 9.20am on Monday, December 19 and another at lunchtime on December 21. Two were detected in the early hours of December 28. Although the drink-driving figures for the month of December to date show a “significant increase” in those driving while under the influence of alcohol, locally the statistics are down one on last year for the Christmas period. On December 1, An Garda Síochána and the RSA launched the Christmas and new year anti-drink driving campaign. This was heavily publicised across all broadcast mediums, particularly social media, and was fronted by the Treacy family, who tragically lost their four-year-old son Ciarán in a road traffic collision involving a drunk driver. Despite this stark ad, people continue to drive under the influence. Nationally, from December 1 to December 20, …

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Post-Christmas alert for motorists

Motorists across the country are being warned to avoid a nightmare, post-Christmas return to work on “flat battery Tuesday” which falls on January 3. Research from leading roadside assistance provider, Allianz Global Assistance Ireland, shows demand for jump-starts dramatically increases on the first day back to work after Christmas due to cars not being driven over the extended holiday period. The company received a 30% increase in flat battery call-outs on the first day back to work in January 2016. Figures also show an increase in calls for flat tyres and clutch faults on that day. Roland Hesse, managing director, Allianz Global Assistance Ireland, said, “We strongly advise motorists to avoid a ‘flat battery Tuesday’ commuter meltdown this January. Every year we see an increase in calls on the first day back to work after Christmas because cars have not been used over the holiday period. We advise motorists to drive their cars at regular intervals over the break in order …

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New rights for victims of crime

The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald,has published the Criminal Justice (Victims of Crime) Bill 2016, following approval by the Government. The Bill will transpose into Irish law Directive 2012/29/EU establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime fulfilling a commitment in the Programme for Government to publish legislation to implement the EU Victims of Crime Directive. The Tánaiste said “This Bill will introduce, for the first time, statutory rights for victims of crime. It is time that the rights of victims are given full recognition in the criminal justice system”. Under the proposed Bill, a victim of a crime will have rights including; · The right to receive comprehensive information on the criminal justice system and their role within it and the range of services and entitlements victims may access from their first contact with the Garda Síochána. · The right to receive a written acknowledgement of the making of the …

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Cathaoirleach contributes to charity

The Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council has made Christmas donations to five local charity organisations. Councillor Bill Chambers made the donations in place of sending Mayoral Christmas cards.The charity organisations are Aware, West Clare Cancer Support Group, Irish Kidney Association (Clare), Brothers of Charity (Kilrush), and the Mid-West Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association. “I am delighted to contribute to the respective fundraising efforts of these wonderful organisations who for different but important reasons rely on such donations,” stated Cathaoirleach Chambers.

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Parteen NS collects historical gems

An intriguing link between a Parteen family and the Easter 1916 Rising has emerged, following the establishment of a small temporary museum in the local national school. Sixth-class teacher, Councillor Cathal Crowe has managed to unearth a few historical gems from the locality, as a result of the school’s appeal to assist children during their history studies. One local family donated a lamp belonging to an old motorcycle, which was used to carry urgent messages from the GPO garrisson during Easter Week to freedom-fighters in Wicklow. On one occasion, the motorcyclist crashed his vehicle, while travelling over the Wicklow Mountains on a mission to seek reinforcements from Wicklow to assist in the Rising. Leaving the bike behind, the motorcyclist, who is the great-great-grandfather of a local child, continued on his journey with the lamp. Other donations include pieces of old clothing, war medals and medals depicting military service. Jackie Whelan from the West Clare Railway donated iron, pins, nails and …

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Clarisford Park in line for another award

AN award-winning €2.5m sports and recreation facility at Clarisford Park, Killaloe, is in the running for another award. Officially opened by Finance Minister, Michael Noonan last September, Clarisford Park has been confirmed as a finalist in the Best Public Park Category at the 2017 Community and Council Awards, presented by IPB Insurance and LAMA. It has been shortlised alongside St Catherine’s Park, Lucan; Mungret Park and Playground, Limerick and Tramore Valley Park, Cork. The Community and Council Awards highlight and recognise communities and councils working together, bringing national recognition to projects and developments that may otherwise go unrecognised. Town, borough, city and county councillors nominate projects across 20 categories that demonstrate the work implemented through unique projects that enhance their local area for the good of the community. Once a project is nominated, the individual(s) associated with the nominated project or initiative are contacted and given the opportunity to submit an entry. The category winners for 2017 will be announced …

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