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Closure of Dundalk-Carlingford road ‘causes mayhem up the mountain’

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Cllr. Antoin Watters

Cllr. Antoin Watters

Cllr. Antoin Watters

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The closure of the main Dundalk to Greenore Road when accidents occur is leading to “mayhem up the mountain” the Dundalk Joint Policing Committee (JPC) meeting heard this week.

Cllr.Antoin Watters, who is Assistant Secretary of the Cooley Community Alert Group, highlighted that a very serious collision on the R173 recently had led to it being shut to traffic for a considerable time.

He told the meeting that when this happens all of the traffic, including large HGV lorries are re- routed across the mountain road.

‘All the traffic is going across these narrow mountain roads, and no one has a clue where they are going, and it causes absolute mayhem up the mountain as you could have two HGV’s meeting on a small road.”

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‘The knock on effect of this is the large tailbacks that form, and the potential for accidents to occur on roads where it is very hard to get access.”

He praised the work of both gardai and the local authority during the recent major road closure, but said it was vital now to look at “a different approach.”

"Hopefully the road won’t be closed again for a long time, but we do need to look at a one way system where  the lorries and vehicles coming out of Greenore are directed one way, and the traffic coming from Dundalk heading to Greenore is sent in a different direction, just so that they can avoid each other.”

"We need to have some sort of plan in place in event of this happening again, a plan to get out there and get signs up.”

Supt. Charlie Armstrong said the recent accident was a serious one, and did require the road to be closed for a time for the scene to be examined.

"We had to close the road for the safety of those involved, to make sure they got the medical attention they needed. Then we also have to try to preserve the scene if it did escalate to a more serious incident.”  He said they would look at notifying the media when incidents like this occur. 

He added that he would liaise with the Cooley Community Alert Group about the concerns raised.


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