independent

Thursday 21 August 2014

Melted tar puts shop in a sticky situation

Fintan Lambe

Published 17/06/2014 | 05:30

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Phyliss Breen had to scrub the tar off using white spirit.

A BALLYCANEW shopkeeper has had to resort to laying down cat litter to prevent melted tar being walked into the store by shoppers, as temperatures began to soar in North Wexford this week.

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Phyliss and Pat Breen of Breen's Londis, Ballycanew, made an emergency dash to Wexford County Council's office on Friday afternoon, after their pristine shop floor became covered in black tar footprints.

'The Council laid tar on the edge of the road on Thursday night, and people began getting it on their cars, in their cars, and on their feet,' said Phyliss. 'They were walking it into the shop, and we had to get down on our hands and knees and scrub it off with white spirits.'

'There were lines of tar running down the side of the road like water,' she added. 'I've never seen anything like it. We were even cleaning people's shoes for them.'

Customers park along the roadside at the front of the shop, and a slight dip in the road was filled with liquid tar and chippings last week, but the tar soon bubbled up in the warm weather, and began to flow.

A spokesman for Wexford County Council said that with the warm temperatures, the freshly laid tar didn't get the chance to cool. 'A crew went out and more grit has been put on it to cover it up,' he said. 'When it was fresh, it was very fresh. It was unfortunate with the hot weather, and we did our best to resolve it.'

Pat Breen said they were grateful to the council for its quick response. 'We kept putting cat litter on the road because it was the best thing I could find,' he said. 'The Council sent in contract cleaners and they spent four hours cleaning it on their hands and knees.'

He said they received a lot of sympathy and offers of help from customers and he thanked them for their support.

'The cleaners did a great job,' he said. 'It shouldn't have happened, but it was tidied and cleaned and it was sorted, and we're grateful to the Council for its response.'

Enniscorthy Guardian

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