Friday 28 October 2016

One year after €38m Eircode system is launched Communications Minister doesn't have one on his own website

Geraldine Gittens

Published 14/07/2016 | 08:45

Minister for Communications Denis Naughten
Minister for Communications Denis Naughten

Communications Minister Denis Naughten has defended the €38m cost of rolling out Ireland's Eircode system, which was introduced one year ago.

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When RTE’s Morning Ireland presenter Fran McNulty called Mr Naughten on the fact that his own website does not display an Eircode, the politican replied that he had been fully endorsing the use of Eircodes to his constituents.

During the General Election he distributed 57,000 keep safe cards to his constituents urging people to use their Eircodes and leave it by the phone if they ever have to call emergency services, he said.

Mr Naughten said when Eircode – on which €21m has been spent so far - is fully operational, it will be “good value for money”.

“It’s like taking a small baby who’s started to crawl and saying ‘why isn’t the baby running?’” he told RTE’s Morning Ireland.

“Significant” progress has been made over the last 12 months in relation to how the location code system is being used, he said.

“Since February the National Ambulance Service are using Eircode… now that Eircode can pinpoint particular homes, it will mean the ambulances will get there an awful lot quicker.”

“If an incident happens in a home they can immediately deploy the ambulance instead of people giving them directions.”

He added: “Gardai are now using it in relation to firearms so they know each premises in the country that the firearms are in.”

Talks are now at an advanced stage with Google Maps in relation to Eircode, he said.

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