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Locals' shock as man and woman die in house fire

TWO people have died in a house fire in Gort, Co Galway.

The fire broke out at the house on Station Road in the centre of town just before 3am this morning.

Four fire tenders from Gort and Loughrea attended the scene and battled the blaze for over two hours. The body of a woman in her 60s and a 38-year-old man were removed.

The woman was named locally today as Nuala Sweeney. Ms Sweeney was originally from Dublin but had been living in the Galway town for some time.

"She was a very quiet woman and kept very much to herself. We would not have seen either of them very often, but just knew they had been living there," said one local.

Another told how she was awoken by the flashing lights of the fire brigade at about 4am this morning.

"I had no idea what was happening and then I was told this morning that it was Nuala. It's very sad," she added.

The bodies of the two victims were recovered from a bedroom and the living room. It is understood nobody else was in the house at the time.


Gardai and fire crews believe the fire may have originated in the bedroom. The entire terraced house was destroyed in the blaze, but fire crews worked tirelessly to ensure it did not spread to neighbouring houses and businesses.

The house backs on to the yard of a local supply shop which stores gas cylinders in a yard. While locals were concerned that the cylinders might have exploded during the blaze, a member of the fire brigade insisted that the fire was contained to the house at all times.

The scene of the fire remains sealed off this morning and gardai will carry out a technical examination of the building.

The bodies have been removed from the scene and taken University Hospital Galway where a post mortem examination will take place today.