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Driver of car that hit OAPs was on bail

THE 26-year-old driver of a car that ploughed into three elderly men was on bail at the time, it has emerged.

Pensioner Eric Ryan (79) lost a leg following the horrific incident and remains in a critical condition in hospital .

The 79-year-old and two of his friends, retired garda Liam 'Willie' Barry (77) and Dermot O'Brien, a retired postman also in his 70s, were chatting in the car park of a Clare pitch and putt course when they were hit by a Hyundai Accent on Thursday.


The driver of the car, which was being pursued by a garda patrol at the time, is well-known to gardai and was on bail for burglary offences.

He and a second suspect are believed to have been involved in a spate of burglaries in the nearby Doonas area of Clonara, Co Clare, on Thursday.

They were being pursued by gardai when they drove straight through the junction in Parteen village and veered across the road, ploughing into the three pensioners and two parked cars.

Both men fled the scene, but the driver was arrested a short time later on a drinkdriving charge but has since been re-arrested on suspicion of endangerment. The second suspect remains at large.

The most seriously injured pensioner, Eric Ryan, of College Park, Corbally, Limerick, was pinned beneath the Hyundai, and firefighters had to use special cutting equipment to release him.

Mr Ryan had to have a leg amputated due to the extent of his injuries and remains in a critical condition at University Hospital Limerick.

His next-door neighbour and long time friend Mr Barry, who had worked in the PSV office in Henry Street garda station, is in a stable condition in the same hospital.

Mr O'Brien, from Richmond Park, Corbally, has been discharged from hospital.

The three men had gone to Parteen to play pitch and putt.