Friday 18 April 2014

Taxi driver killed in head-on crash

Gardai have appealed for witnesses after two people were killed in one of the first crashes of the new year

A taxi driver was one of the victims of the first fatal car crash of the new year.

Two motorists were killed when they collided head-on in Co Mayo shortly before 5am.

Gardai said the victims, aged 43 and 47, were pronounced dead at the scene on the main Foxford and Ballina road a t Ballynahaglish .

The older man was named locally as Gearoid Scully, a father and taxi driver who was originally from Dublin and had lived in the town for more than 10 years.

He was described as a well-known but quiet man.

Councillor Willie Nolan said his thoughts were with the Scully family.

"He was well-liked in the area and well-known and well-respected," he said.

"It's very tragic, particularly at this time of year, for his family and colleagues in the taxi and hackney business."

Both victims were taken to the mortuary at Mayo General Hospital in Castlebar, where post-mortem examinations will take place.

The main N26 road between Ballina and Swinford was closed for most of the day as forensic crash investigators examined the vehicles and the scene.

Car crash deaths increased for the first time in eight years last year.

Provisional figures show 190 people lost their lives on the roads in 2013 - up 17% from 162 in 2012.

It was the first year since 2005 that road deaths had risen.

Motorists have been warned to take extra care as heavy rain spreads across the country, with some showers turning to sleet.

Met Eireann said strong onshore winds gusting to gale force will also affect Munster, Leinster and east Ulster coastal areas for a time with a risk of local spot flooding.

Press Association

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