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Saturday 16 December 2017

Fine Gael chairman Flanagan attacks proposed ban on smoking in cars

Fine Gael party chairman Charlie Flanagan has attacked a proposed new law banning smoking in cars.

The legislation, initiated by John Crown in the Seanad, was supported by Health Minister James Reilly. However, Mr Flanagan and a growing number of Fine Gael back-benchers are unenthusiastic about the proposal.

Concern is growing within Fine Gael that the Coalition may repeat the mistake of the Greens who, in targeting a variety of side issues involving dogs and stag hunting, incurred the wrath of an electorate who wanted them to focus on the big ticket problems facing the economy.

Speaking to the Sunday Independent, Mr Flanagan attacked the "political obsession with banning things", saying: "Politics should be about positive achievements rather than just ban, ban, ban. I am not a banner...

"We should use education and persuasion, rather than the blunt instrument of prohibition. The State cannot be expected to police every human activity."

Suicide is not a 'cop-out' says Neville

SUICIDE is not a cop-out on life, and there is nothing shameful about someone who dies of suicide, Fine Gael TD and president of the Irish Association of Suicidology, Dan Neville, said yesterday.

He said those who commit suicide have fought a valiant battle and they have lost the battle to their illness. Mr Neville said that society's attitude to suicide must change, and that the stigma that surrounds mental, psychological and emotional ill-health must be removed.

He was speaking during an address to a seminar at St Munchin's Family Resource Centre in Limerick entitled 'A Community Response to Grief and Loss'.

Irish fans to receive award from UEFA

European soccer governing body UEFA will present a special award to Irish fans to recognise their great behaviour and contribution to Euro 2012.

The announcement was made yesterday in Kiev, where UEFA president Michel Platini added that he intends to travel to Dublin to make the presentation.

The decision by the UEFA executive committee comes after Irish supporters were praised internationally for their behaviour, despite results on the pitch.

The FAI say the award will be dedicated to the memory of James Nolan who lost his life in a tragic accident in Bydgoszcz during the tournament.

Woman released in nose-bite probe

A 21-year-old woman has been released without charge in connection with an attack on another woman in Dublin last week in which part of the victim's nose was bitten off.

A file is being prepared for the DPP.

The 23-year-old injured woman has since had surgery in an effort to rebuild the missing part of her nose.

The suspect was arrested on Friday at her home in Ongar, west Dublin.

No winner of €2.6m Lotto jackpot

THERE was no winner of last night's €2,626,081 Lotto jackpot. The numbers were 2, 22, 24, 26, 38, 42 (bonus 28).

There were two Match 5+bonus winners who each receive €25k; 43 Match 5s (€1,697); 110 Match 4+bonus (€166); 1,967 Match 4s (€57); 2,758 Match 3+bonus (€27) and 34,052 Match 3s (€5 scratchcard). The Lotto Plus 1 numbers were 5, 7, 14, 22, 35, 45 (bonus 19) and the Lotto Plus 2 numbers were 11, 17, 24, 28, 33, 36 (bonus 16).

And in the UK draw for £6.7m, the numbers were 1, 18, 19, 30, 38, 24 (bonus 41).

Corcoran is first to run lap of Ireland

Super runner Alan Corcoran yesterday became the first man to run a lap of Ireland in 35 marathons straight as he crossed the finish line in his native Waterford.

After 34 days of braving intense weather conditions the 21-year-old's epic solo journey culminated in a 35th and final marathon with hundreds of participants at the Viking marathon in his native county.

Flying ambulance to be relaunched

A service to fly injured people to hospital from car crashes and other incidents is to be relaunched this week -- after an earlier attempt failed when a €6.4m helicopter crash-landed in a Tipperary field.

The Emergency Aeromedical Service (EAS) operated by the Air Corps after an agreement with the HSE was only weeks in operation when an EC-135 helicopter made a forced landing at Borrisoleigh, Co Tipperary, last month.

The two crew and a HSE paramedic were uninjured after the helicopter apparently hit power lines.

Fuel smugglers dump diesel sludge

CROSS-BORDER fuel-smuggling racketeers caused a toxic pollution threat yesterday at Annyalla, between Monaghan town and Castleblayney, when they dumped five plastic containers with almost 5,000 litres of diesel sludge.

It was the third illicit sludge dumping on the Republic side of the Monaghan/Armagh Border in the past week.

Van Morrison premiere at Sligo Live

Legendary singer Van Morrison will premiere an exciting new show when Sligo Live -- the folk, roots and indie music festival -- returns for its eighth year this October. In what promises to be a really special evening, Van Morrison will present a show entitled 'Lyrics and Poetry: Emphasis on Words'.

This intimate and unique performance on Sunday, October 28, at IT Sligo's Knocknarea Arena will see Van Morrison accompanied by his rhythm section performing songs with a strong emphasis on words and his poetry.

Tickets to this unique show, priced at €47.50 plus €1 service charge, are on sale from

Social media flood warning proposed

A HIGH-tech social-media text warning system is to be examined amid claims the worst of Cork's €20m flood damage could have been avoided.

Lord Mayor John Buttimer acknowledged that warning systems need to improved -- and he is now to propose the examination of an integrated warning system.

This will combine traditional warnings with flood alerts via texts and social media such as Facebook and Twitter.

Sunday Independent

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