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Man's ear bitten off in St Patrick's Day attack

ST PATRICK'S Day celebrations were marred by drink-fuelled violence as the emergency services responded to hundreds of calls around the country.

A 25-year-old man, who had part of his left ear bitten off in an incident in Co Louth, required plastic surgery at St James's Hospital in Dublin.

The gruesome attack took place outside a take-away on Bridge Street, Ardee, at 1.50am yesterday. It is understood the injured man is from the area.

Separately, a 16-year-old received facial injuries after he was assaulted with a bottle to the head in Skerries.

Meanwhile, the capital's streets descended into chaos as the emergency services dealt with the fallout from the celebrations.

Dublin Fire Brigade received more than 300 calls between 6pm on St Patrick's Day and 7am yesterday, which included 10 assaults in the city centre, which emergency crews say were all alcohol-fuelled.

Two men in their 30s were hospitalised after they were set upon by a gang of youths while waiting at the Luas stop at The Square in Tallaght.

One of the men was knocked unconscious in the brutal attack. Both casualties were rushed to Tallaght Hospital where they were treated for their injuries.

Meanwhile, Liam Doran, head of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), described drunk people who swamped A&E after over-indulging during the annual festivities as "selfish".

He warned the blight of binge drinking stretches hospital resources close to breaking point.

He also stressed medical attention given to drunk people and their friends continues to divert scarce resources from patients who are more deserving of treatment.

Irish Independent