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Bomb squad at Shannon but no explosives detected

NO explosives were found after a suspicious device was examined by an Explosives Ordnance Disposal team at Shannon Airport on Monday evening. An adapted phone in the hand luggage of a Bangladeshi man who was on a Kuwait-New York flight aroused suspicion at Shannon’s US pre-clearance facility around 4pm. The suspect phone was then subject to a chemical examination, which is used to test for certain chemicals. It tested positive, but such a result can also be returned if an object has been exposed to certain substances, not linked to explosives. Following the test the smoking areas at Shannon were evacuated for a short period of time and the device was brought to a safe location outside the airport. Gardai summoned the Explosives Ordnance Disposal team from Cork and following further examination they determined that there were no explosives present. The owner of the phone, who is in his mid 50s, is understood to have been very co-operative with the …

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Two rescued as engine catches fire

Two people were rescued from Lough Derg yesterday afternoon following a suspected engine fire on board their cruiser. Lough Derg RNLI, based in Dromineer, went to the incident shortly after 2pm following reports that a fire had broken out as the cruiser was travelling from Ballina up the lake. The lifeboat located the 31ft cruiser at anchor off Hare Island, off the County Clare shore. The passengers were safe and unharmed. The skipper had cut his engine and dropped anchor when he noticed black smoke billowing from the engine. When the lifeboat arrived on scene, the engine was no longer issuing smoke and the situation had settled. With an RNLI crew member on board, the cruiser was taken under tow to the public harbour at Dromineer. Meanwhile, Lough Derg RNLI rescued five Indian tourists from a cruiser that ran aground on rocks near Illaunmore, off Whitegate,on Sunday last. The lifeboat located the vessel at 12.47pm and found all passengers to …

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Man dies in Meelick crash

A man in his 20’s has died and a woman is in a serious condition in hospital following a single vehicle crash in Meelick earlier today. The incident occurred at around 4am at Woodcock Hill. It is understood the driver lost control of the vehicle and collided with a tree. The male driver of the car was seriously injured and pronounced dead at the scene. His body was removed to University Hospital Limerick. The female passenger, aged 25, was injured and taken to University Hospital Limerick with what gardai say were serious injuries. The road has been closed to facilitate a Forensic collision examination and local diversions are in place.   Gardaí in Mayorstone, Limerick are investigating the single vehicle fatal road traffic collision andare appealing for witnesses to contact 061 456980, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station.

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Champion reporter’s environmental series makes award shortlist

Clare Champion reporter Dan Danaher has been shortlisted for a media award for a special environmental series concerning 17 local industries. The Clare Champion/ Mary Raftery Special Investigation has been nominated for an award in the Regional Newspaper Category of the Newsbrands National Media Awards. The other shortlisted nominees include: Fintan Walsh, Limerick Leader; Sorcha Crowley, Sligo Champion and Kieran McCarthy, Southern Star. The results of the National Media Awards will be announced at a special ceremony in the Mansion House, Dublin this Thursday. Guest of honour will be Denis Naughten TD, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment. The judging panel, which is chaired by former Farmers’ Journal editor, Matt Dempsey includes some very eminent and respected journalists and editors. It comprises of former Irish Times editor, Geraldine Kennedy, former Irish Examiner editor, Tim Vaughan and RTE news editor, Michael O’Kane and Michael Foley, Professor Emeritus, DIT, journalist and author. Over a 12-week period, the Clare Champion/ Mary Raftery …

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Wexford Opera Festival features three little known operas every year.

A night at the opera

The Wexford Opera Festival is a bit of an unusual proposition but it works and has done for years. Take three obscure operas, some of which haven’t seen the light of day since their début performance, and stage them again over the course of a few weeks. Of course, some operas are obscure for a reason and maybe they should be left mouldering but for every duffer there are several gems. This year was promising, with all three operas sung in Italian. It’s a general rule of mine not to go near German language opera. I find it dark and depressing. Surprisingly, opera in English is often woefully bad. There’s the advantage of being able to fully understand what’s going on without resorting to subtitles but there’s just something wrong about English language opera. You’re generally safer sticking with Italian or at a pinch, French. We travelled down in the aftermath of Ophelia and just before storm Brian made itself …

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Bishop prays for road users

Bishop Fintan Monahan has urged all road users to take extra care this October bank holiday weekend. After 12 noon mass on Sunday, he will lead a ‘Blessing of the Roads’ ceremony in the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Ennis and offer prayers for the safety of all road users. Bishop Monahan has invited parishes in the Diocese of Killaloe to join with him in prayers over the weekend. Bishop Monahan said, “Statistics indicate that bank holiday weekends can be high risk times on our roads. I am aware that many county councils and civic groups and especially the Road Safety Authority, work very hard to promote safety on the roads. But the reality is that we all share this responsibility to protect human life on our roads. “Up to this morning (Friday) 125 people have died this year on roads across the State. While the trend is down from the 160 deaths this time last year, it …

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AA caution on weekend driving

In advance of the October Bank Holiday weekend, AA Ireland is warning motorists to exercise additional caution while driving, as conditions worsen over the coming weeks. While there is little risk of significant weather events currently, the changing of the clocks and the start of the winter season represent an increasingly dangerous period on Irish roads. “With the clocks going back this Sunday motorists will notice increasingly dark conditions when driving, particularly during their post-work commute. To make matters worse, as we move into winter we can expect an increase in hazardous weather conditions such as heavy rain and fog which can greatly affect visibility, so it’s important that motorists react accordingly by taking extra care on the roads in the coming months,” said Conor Faughnan, AA director of consumer affairs. “While it’s important that cyclists and pedestrians do their part by donning hi-vis vests, motorists must take the greatest share of the burden when it comes to keeping our …

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HIQA finds compliance issues at Kilrush hospital

A HIQA report on Kilrush District Hospital has found one instance of a major non-compliance and nine minor non-compliance issues. The announced inspections took place on July 31 and August 1, while 35 residents were in the building. The major non compliant issue was in relation to the St Flannan’s three-bed room. “Two of the beds were located in close proximity to one another. The inspector observed that a resident sitting in her wheelchair beside her bed was moved to the day room to allow a visitor sit beside the resident in the adjacent bed,” the report said. “The privacy and dignity of residents was further compromised due to the clear glass panels which were located on both entrance doors to the ward. St Flannan’s three-bedded room did not meet the needs of residents and was unsuitable in design and layout. It accommodated three female residents at the time of inspection. There was inadequate space to store clothes and other …

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