A shocked motorist says it is a miracle she escaped serious injury after a swan flew straight through her windscreen on a busy road.
Mary Murphy was left terrified after the large adult swan, believed to be sick or disorientated, flew so low over the busy road that it ended up smashing directly into her windscreen.
The impact, which occurred as Mary was driving from Mallow to Cork at 12 noon in heavy traffic on Monday, felt similar to a missile hitting the small Suzuki car, she said.
The swan was killed instantly and the force of the impact drove the bird through the windscreen, knocking off Mary's rear-view mirror with the animal left lying wedged on top of the steering column.
Part of the car's roof and side pillar were even dented by the impact.
Astonishingly, Mary was left uninjured.
However, she was left traumatised by the incident, which also saw the inside of the car sprayed with blood from the dead swan.
The skilled driver kept her cool while in the outside lane on the busy motorway after the impact.
She managed to indicate and pull in to the hard shoulder before bringing her Suzuki SX4 to a safe stop, avoiding other cars.
"I am still shaking over what happened," Mary said.
"There was no warning at all. The swan just hit the windscreen. It was like a bomb going off.
"Thankfully, I didn't brake hard, because if I had I definitely would have been hit from behind by other cars on the road."
Mary was helped by passing motorist Alan Burke, who witnessed the incident.