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Thursday 2 October 2014

Locals to block lethal road after death of schoolgirl (15)

Published 03/05/2013 | 05:00

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Leah Ni Fhinneadha died after being hit by a car

RESIDENTS of a village where a 15-year-old schoolgirl was killed in a road crash have vowed to block the stretch of road where she died in order to demand that safety measures be put in place.

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Leah Ni Fhinneadha, from Cladhnach, Carraroe, Co Galway, was killed when she was struck by a car in Rossaveal on Wednesday night.

She is the third person to lose her life on that stretch of road in Connemara, according to locals.

The schoolgirl, who attended Scoil Colmcille in Inverin, was walking with a friend near Terry's pub in Rossaveal.

Now residents have warned that they will block the road in protest at the lack of both footpaths and lighting in the area.

Padraic O Conghaile, who is the chairman of Glor na Tuaithe, said locals had been campaigning for a footpath and lighting for some time.

He continued: "This is the third person to die here within a few years.

"Two foreign nationals also died on the same road – one just a month ago and the other a few years ago. We thought it might be fixed then.

"There is no lighting and no footpaths, so we are going to block off the road and demand that they put in lights and a footpath."

Mr O Conghaile said the road was particularly busy as it led to the port.

The schoolgirl, Ms Ni Fhinneadha, was the only daughter of Liam and Noreen Feeney.

Following the collision, she was taken to University Hospital Galway, where she was pronounced dead.

Her teenage friend, Alan McDonagh, and the male driver of the car were not injured in the incident.

Mr O Conghaile told how he came on the accident last night.

Footpaths

"It was very upsetting. I knew Leah very well, she was a friend of my daughters. Everyone is heartbroken. She was a lovely girl and she had lots of friends.

"Alan's house is nearby and the pair were walking back there. He broke the news to our daughter this morning."

Local councillor Seosamh O Cuaig said the stretch of road had been a concern for locals for some time.

He explained: "We raised the question at the last meeting of the Connemara council area and requested that a footpath be placed down there but the answer we got was there was no money for that. It's a terrible tragedy."

The road was closed yesterday morning as gardai carried out forensic examinations.

Gardai are appealing for any witnesses to the accident to contact Salthill garda station on 091-514720, the Garda Confidential telephone line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station.

Irish Independent

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