Road safety concerns raised with Taoiseach
Published 09/08/2014 | 12:00
OMEATH road safety campaigners took the opportunity provided by the visit to Carlingford by Taoiseach Enda Kenny for the opening of Sky Park to raise their concerns with the Fine Gael leader.
Tracy Sharkey and Collette O'Sullivan from the Omeath Safety Action Group met with the Taoiseach after it was facilitated and attended by Louth TD Peter Fitzpatrick.
The group wanted to highlight their serious safety concerns about sections of the Omeath-Carlingford Greenway in Omeath where pedestrians and cyclists on the greenway are directed out on to the busy R173.
During the meeting one of the sections, where the 3 metre wide greenway is diverted on to a poorly surfaced, narrow roadside path, further reduced to 2ft wide due to obstructing telegraph poles was specifically highlighted.
Mr Kenny spoke told the group about the greenway in his Mayo, his native county and similar safety issues that were overcome there and agreed to return later in the year to travel the North Louth greenway and see for himself the issues.
Ms Sharkey said: 'We were satisfied with the meeting with Enda Kenny and delighted with his promise to return to Omeath later this year when the greenway is open.
'We have been raising our safety concerns about this and other similar matters in Omeath for some months now. While the Louth County Council CEO told us that people are personally responsible for the routes they chose to walk and cycle we are seeing more and more visitors to Omeath, using the greenway in its current state, putting themselves and their children at risk.
'The council, in their publications, have highlighted the dangerous nature of the traffic through Omeath and the need for works to provide better conditions for pedestrians and cyclists and yet here they are deliberately diverting pedestrians and cyclists including children onto a dangerous path. We hope for everyone's sake there is no accident or injury before this matter is properly addressed'.
The campaign group got some good news recently when the Department of Transport granted funding for safety measures at the school in the village.
Ms Sharkey said: 'We are soon meeting with council staff to ensure the success of this project and that further works in Omeath get prioritised. We are greatly encouraged by the support we have received from returned councillors across all parties and in particular, grateful to Mr Fitzpatrick for his continued help in these matters'.