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Young man dies and seven others injured in crashes

A MAN in his 20s died and seven others were injured in two separate road accidents yesterday.

The man was killed when a car crashed into a barrier in the middle of the M1 in the early hours of yesterday morning.

The car ploughed into the central reservation on the northbound carriageway at Donabate in north Co Dublin at 3.30am.

The dead man, who has not yet been named, was a backseat passenger. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Two other young men were taken to Beaumont Hospital where they were discharged after treatment.

Fire brigade units from Balbriggan, Swords and Phibsboro attended the scene.

Gardai closed off part of the M1 northbound as a result of the accident and diversions were in place until about 10am.

Elsewhere, five friends, ranging in age from 18 to 24, were injured in a road accident in Co Kildare. The single-vehicle crash happened in Celbridge at about 5am.

Gardai said the driver of the car, which was carrying two women and three men, lost control and crashed into a pole on the main Celbridge to Clane road. The two female passengers are friends from Celbridge while the three men are from nearby Newcastle.

One of the passengers was released from hospital last night. Another sustained a head injury -- but none of their injuries are believed to be life-threatening.

"It really was the luck of God none of them were killed," a garda source said last night.

Meanwhile, gardai are investigating an incident that occurred in the town at around 3.50am involving a car matching the description of the vehicle involved in the accident.

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Part of the Clane-Celbridge road near St Wolstan's Community School was closed to traffic yesterday morning while forensic investigators carried out an examination. Gardai are appealing for witnesses.

The accidents occurred despite warnings from gardai and the Road Safety Authority of Ireland to take extra care on the road during the bank holiday weekend, a period when accidents and fatalities are not uncommon due to increased traffic.

Figures show that one-third of road deaths happen during the summer, with 53 people killed over the past decade during the June bank holiday weekends alone.

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