Wednesday 21 March 2018

Father killed and man injured in falling tree accidents

Stephen Maguire and Pat Flynn

A FATHER of five was killed and another man was injured in two separate accidents involving falling trees at the weekend.

Danny Gallagher (47) was killed instantly when a tree fell on him just before 1pm on Saturday afternoon near the village of Termon in Co Donegal.

Mr Gallagher, who has five children aged from 2 to 19, was cutting down a 25ft evergreen palm tree to allow more light into his brother Ciaran's home at Doon Well outside the village of Termon.

His brother was pulling a tractor with a rope attached, but it appears the tree fell on top of Mr Gallagher after it changed direction while falling.

Locals said he tried to escape the falling tree but was caught by some branches from the top of the tree.

The emergency services were alerted but Mr Gallagher, who worked for the ESB, was pronounced dead at the scene.

His wife and children were being comforted by the local community yesterday

A full investigation is being carried out into the cause of the accident.

However, a spokesman for Milford garda station said it looked likely that it was simply a tragic accident.

"It appears that the tree changed direction and, despite his attempts to avoid the falling tree, Danny was struck.

"There was nothing anybody could do. It's just a terrible tragedy," said the spokesman.

Meanwhile, another man is recovering after he was pinned to the ground by a falling tree in a freak accident in Co Clare on Saturday.

The alarm was raised at around 1pm by the injured man's friend. The men had been felling trees on lands at Ballybeg on the outskirts of Ennis at the time of the incident.

It is understood that a tree fell awkwardly and struck the man, pinning him to the ground. The location of the accident made it difficult for emergency crews to reach him.

An ambulance and rapid response advanced paramedic unit were first to respond and had to travel along a narrow dirt road to get close to the casualty. Medics then had to carry all their equipment almost 700 metres through a wooded area and rough terrain.

It is understood the man suffered pelvic or hip injuries.

One rescuer said: "It was a long trek down to where this man was. It was lucky he wasn't alone and that he had someone with him to raise the alarm."

Irish Independent

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