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Backlog of flights to ease at Shannon as weather improves

OPTIMISM is being expressed that the backlog of flights at Shannon caused by today’s weather is about to ease. A spokeswoman for the airport said: “Shannon Airport remained open throughout the day and experienced a number of flight cancellations and delays, but we are beginning to see a slow improvement in the weather conditions and are cautiously optimistic that the backlog of delayed flights will now begin to resume throughout the evening and tomorrow. “The Aer Lingus London Heathrow flight EI385 landed at Shannon at 4.13pm and a number of transatlantic services with Aer Lingus and Norwegian Air, delayed from earlier today, have been rescheduled for tonight. “Airlines will continue to advise passengers of schedule changes and we still advise intending passengers to check the status of their flight with their airline before travelling to the airport.  We will continue monitoring the situation throughout the evening. Passengers are encouraged to contact their airlines and they can find live flight information …

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Thousands of Clare homes without electricity

THOUSANDS of Clare homes have been left without electricity due to Hurricane Ophelia and it may be several days before some people have it restored. According to the ESB Networks in the region of 4,000 customers in Cranny, Miltown, Drumquin, Ennistymon, Kilrush, Ennis, Shannon, Cratloe, Tulla, and Scariff as well as their surrounds have been left without power. In a statement ESB Networks warned that many people will not have their electricity restored for some time. “As of 4:30 pm, approximately 360,000 electricity customers are without power as a result of over 3,200 individual faults on the network across the country. Fallen trees on overhead lines are responsible for most of the damage to the network. “The majority of customers who have lost supply at present will be without power tonight and over a number of days. Based on previous experience of Storm Darwin in 2014, where about 280,000 customers were left without supply, we can predict that it will …

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safety advice during Hurricane Ophelia

  This is one of the key safety messages issued by the Emergency Coordination Group, which should be taken on board by people on Monday. People should not travel in Red level warning areas during the height of the storm unless absolutely necessary and take due care if travelling in all other areas. People should listen to local radio and national media broadcasts regarding the current weather situation. With high seas predicted, the public are advised to stay away from coastal areas during this period. Very strong winds are predicted making driving conditions hazardous, especially for the more vulnerable road users, such as cyclists, pedestrian’s, motorcyclist and high sided vehicles. Road users should pay particular attention to the risk posed by fallen trees and flying debris. Given anticipated weather conditions, Monday should be  no bike day. Power outages are likely to occur in certain parts of the country, with contingency planning activated by the ESB. The ESB is advising the …

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average house price jumps 8% in 12 months

THE average asking price for a house in Clare jumped by almost 8% between the third quarter of 2016 and the third quarter of 2017, new figures have revealed. It follows a rise of 6% between 2015 and 2016. The average price now sought in the county is just shy of €168,000, 40% above the lowest point of the crash. According to Daft’s figures, the average asking price for a one-bed apartment in Clare is €61,000, while it is €79,000 for a two-bed apartment. The average price for a three-bed semi-detached house is €118,000, it is €223,000 for a four-bed bungalow and a five-bed detached house is €244,000. The report states that prices across the province of Munster as a whole are typically 8% higher than they were a year ago. There are just over 8,000 properties advertised on the site in the province, 8% less than in the third quarter of 2016. Just over half of all properties in …

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protest to highlight Kilkee Coast Guard concerns

A public protest aimed at highlighting issues relating to the provision of water-based rescue services in Kilkee, will take place on Thursday, October 12 at 7pm. It will be held beside the Irish Coast Guard station at the East End car park in the town. One of the groups represented will be the Kilkee Boat and Fishing Club. Ray O’Halloran, who is a member, was keen to point out that his reason for protesting is linked to the structure of the Kilkee Coast Guard Unit and has nothing to do with the volunteers. Currently, the local unit is not allowed to pass George’s Head on a rescue mission. “I’m not protesting against the guys that are in there. I have great admiration for them because they are doing a voluntary job and they are the first people that I would call or depend on. “The protest that I’m involved in has nothing to do with the people involved, it’s to …

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Clarecastle man pleads guilty to dealing Cocaine

A 62-year-old Clarecastle man has pleaded guilty to having €4,000 worth of cocaine in his possession for sale or supply at a sitting of Limerick District Court this week. Gerard Casey of 68 St Joseph’s Terrace, pleaded guilty to charges of having cocaine for sale or supply and possession of the illegal drug on April 20, 2017 at a sitting of Limerick City District Court on Monday, October 2. The Clarecastle man has admitted having the drugs at Bunlicky – a townland on the N18 earlier this year. The court heard that the Director of Public Prosecutions had consented to the matter being dealt with summarily before the district court on a plea of guilty only, and jurisdiction was accepted. A probation report was ordered and the matter was adjourned to December 6 next for this to be prepared and it is likely that sentencing will take place on that date.

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West Clare Man Facing Trial Over Fatal Inagh Crash

A 60-year-old West Clare man has appeared in court this week charged with dangerous driving causing the death of three-year-old Estlin Wall in Inagh earlier this year. Senan O’Flaherty, with an address at Lower Gowerhass, Cooraclare appeared before Ennis District Court on Wednesday. He is charged with dangerous driving causing the death of Estlin Wall at Ballyea South, Inagh on March 15, 2017. The substance of the charge alleges that the defendant drove in a manner, including speed, which, having regard to the circumstances of the case, was dangerous to the public thereby, causing the death of Estlin Wall. Garda Ruth O’Sullivan gave evidence of arresting Mr O’Flaherty at 9.45pm on Monday, September 30 at his address. She said he made no reply after caution in respect of the single charge of dangerous driving causing death. Solicitor Joe Chambers, representing the defendant in court, said he did not have an application for free legal aid. Inspector Tom Kennedy, prosecuting, outlined that the Director of Public Prosecutions had directed that the case proceed on indictment to the Circuit Criminal Court for trial. He said a Book of Evidence would be required in the matter and requested an adjournment to facilitate this. Judge Patrick Durcan, presiding, adjourned the case to December 13 next and granted an application to extend time to serve the Book of Evidence in the case. It is expected that the book will be served on the accused on that date Estlin Luna Wall was the daughter of Amy Dutil Wall and Vincent Wall from Ennistymon and was a sister to Mannix. She died just 11 days shy of her fourth birthday. Her dad, Vincent, is the brother of Steve and Joe Wall of the band The Stunning. He was also in the car on the day she was killed. The family, who run a framing business in Ennistymon, made the decision to donate Estlin’s organs before taking her off life support a number of days after the crash. Arising from the tragedy, Steve Wall set up an online fund to help the family and it received a significant amount of support, with more than €70,000 raised for the family. Donations above this were made to Temple Street Children’s Hospital. In memory of Estlin, her former créche, Inagh Ark Childcare, planted a pink cherry blossom tree. They said when they look at it, they will recall Estlin as “the most beautiful girl with curly fair hair”, “funny, witty, playful and loveable. She had a heart of gold and the most infectious smile”.

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alphonsus cullinan, bishop of waterford

29% Drop in Uptake of HPV vaccine in Clare

There has been a 29% drop in the uptake of the free Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccination programme for girls in County Clare since it commenced in 2010, according to figures released by the HSE. Provisional figures show that the uptake of the vaccine in the county is 10% above the national average at just slightly below 60%, but this has fallen from 89% since the vaccine programme was first introduced. This reduction is something that has not been helped by the comments made by, and later retracted, by Bishop of Waterford Alphonsus Cullinan, who is originally from Lahinch, according to a HSE spokesperson. Bishop Cullinan was quoted in the media last week suggesting that the vaccine would encourage promiscuity. In an interview with WLR (Waterford Local Radio), he preached abstinence, stating the vaccine was “lulling teenage girls into a false sense of security”. “We have to do better than giving our boys condoms and our girls injections,” he said. …

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