Sunday 4 December 2016

Undertakers told to reduce safety risks

Tom Shiel

Published 20/01/2016 | 02:30

Signage – as well as flashing lights – are necessary to indicate a funeral is taking place, according to the coroner for south Mayo, John O’Dwyer. File picture
Signage – as well as flashing lights – are necessary to indicate a funeral is taking place, according to the coroner for south Mayo, John O’Dwyer. File picture

Undertakers have been warned by a coroner they face potential litigation unless they take steps to reduce road safety risks at funerals.

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Signage - as well as flashing lights - are necessary to indicate a funeral is taking place, according to the coroner for south Mayo, John O'Dwyer.

Mr O'Dwyer has written to all undertakers within his jurisdiction outlining his concerns and has spoken to Supt Joe McKenna, head of the Castlebar Garda District, about the issue.

The coroner's concerns were sparked by an inquest he conducted last year into the death of Mary Muhern (56), a nurse, on the N5 national primary route at Bohola.

Ms Mulhern was struck by a passing car after she left a village wake to visit her elderly mother who lives nearby.

At the subsequent inquest, it emerged there was no signage on the road to indicate a funeral was taking place.

Mr O'Dwyer said the lack of such safety measures was "a recipe for disaster".

Following on from his remarks at the inquest hearing, the coroner has now issued his stern warning to undertakers about the potential for litigation.

Irish Independent

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