Children found dead at home after father killed in car crash
Two children were found dead in a house in rural Co Cork shortly after their father was killed in a car crash.
The youngsters, both believed to be under 10, were found in a home just outside the village of Ballycotton at about 10am.
A man had died in a single-vehicle car accident several miles away on the Ballycotton to Shanagarry Road about a half hour earlier.
It is believed the dead man was the children's father.
A Garda spokesman said the dead man was discovered in a car which was destroyed in a fire after crashing into a tree.
No other vehicle was involved.
It is understood local Garda detectives spent some time attempting to contact the children's mother, who had gone to work in Cork city this morning.
The two daughters were found in a room inside the house.
Archbishop Dermot Clifford, the Apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Cloyne in Cork, offered his sympathies to the family.
"I am deeply shocked to learn of the tragic deaths of two children and their father in Ballycotton today," the cleric said.
"My heart goes out to all concerned; the children's mother, to the extended family, relatives and friends and to the community of Ballycotton and to the people of the whole parish of Cloyne.
"On behalf of the people and priests of the diocese, I offer my sincere and heartfelt condolences and I ask for prayers for the deceased and for those who are grieving."
A Garda spokesman described the deaths as a tragic incident.
The man who died was aged in his 40s and the owner of the Toyota Yaris which crashed about one mile from the family home.
A doctor and priest were called to the house near Ballycotton fishing village after the alarm was raised.
A Garda spokesman said relatives were still being traced several hours after the deaths were discovered.
An investigation into the three deaths was launched by Garda detectives in Midleton and officers have also called in the assistant state pathologist. The scene of the house has been sealed off.