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Rat-infested tip is not a dump . . . it's a city cul de sac

ILLEGAL dumping on a cul-de-sac in a city suburb has turned it into arguably the capital's filthiest area.

Despite continuous efforts by the local council to clean up Dunsink Lane in Finglas, it remains a rat-infested health hazard.

Dunsink Lane has long been plagued by illegal fly-tipping and dumping, but more than five years since it was barricaded to stop dumping, the problem has persisted on a serious scale.

Local councillor Dessie Ellis says the laneway, which is 3kms long, is constantly covered in everything from household to commercial waste.

"You find everything, household stuff, kitchen sinks, and cars, vans and trucks. They're not just dumped in the lane but they're also buried in the field close to it, a substantial amount of it is."

Dunsink hit the headlines in October, 2004, when a concrete barrier was erected at the end of the lane by the council to prevent dumping, and more than 40 Traveller families protested at the inconvenience it would cause them.

The barrier was moved to another location on the lane, but full-scale illegal dumping, some of which is believed to be carried out by organised crime gangs, has caused the area to develop into a disgusting health hazard.

"The place is overrun by rats and there is the guts of 200 people living up there, and there's a substantial amount of children. Everyone is complaining."

Cllr Ellis is calling for the road to be cleaned up, reopened, and for the ditches to be stripped back so that all activity taking place is in clear view of the gardai and the council.

"The barrier is a disaster, and it should never have been put there in the first place. It has caused more problems than anything else.

"The road needs to be reopened, redone, and the hedging on both sides of the road needs to be pulled away so that the road can be clearly seen. It has to be done properly."

Cllr Ellis says the laneway has taken on a life of its own since the barrier was put up, and it is a dangerous area to enter.

"Dumping alone is criminal activity, and a lot of activities taking place on Dunsink Lane have a criminal element. It's just been left to its own devices, and it's criminal what's going on."

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Fingal County Council said: "We have to devote considerable resources to Dunsink Lane. Every couple of months we have to do a clean-up on it.

"We do regular unplanned check points in Dunsink and we work with the Criminal Assets Bureau, the gardai, and Dublin City Council on it."

She added: "Our primary concern is the safety of the people involved in enforcement, so we have to have a very co-ordinated campaign."