Bridge crash victim (30) and injured friends 'on way home' when tragedy struck
One man killed and two injured after car smashes into bridge
One man was killed and two others were injured after their car slammed into a stone bridge in an early-morning crash.
The victim was named locally as Alan Rynne (30) from Corrig, Inagh, Co Clare.
The tragedy unfolded shortly after 4am yesterday when the red Volkswagen in which the three friends were travelling towards Miltown Malbay struck the left side of a stone bridge on the main R474 road.
The crash happened about 3km from Miltown Malbay.
It's understood the group had been out socialising in the area and were on their way home when tragedy struck.
Mr Rynne, who was a backseat passenger in the car, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The 28-year-old male driver and a 26-year-old woman who was a front-seat passenger were taken to University Hospital Limerick where their injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.
Sources said the driver was able to climb out of the car and raise the alarm.
Two units of the fire brigade from Ennistymon as well as a number of paramedic and Garda units responded to the accident.
On arrival they found two of the casualties still in the car but were able to free them by cutting the car's doors.
It's understood the force of the crash caused parts of the bridge to shift about six inches.
Meanwhile, Mr Rynne's body was removed to University Hospital Limerick where a post-mortem was due to be carried out.
The accident led to a section of the road being closed for a time while forensic collision investigators investigated the scene.
Gardaí are now appealing for any witnesses to the accident.
"We are appealing for anyone who travelled on the R474 road between Miltown Malbay and Caherogan between 4am and 4.15am on Monday to contact us," Inspector Paul Slattery said.
"We would like to hear from anyone who may have witnessed this collision or anyone who was in the area at the time and saw anything that might assist us with our inquiries," he said.
"We would also like to extend our condolences to the family of the victim and wish a speedy recovery to those who have been injured," he added.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Miltown Malbay garda station on 065 708 4222, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda station.