Woman was left stranded at Limerick Tunnel toll plaza

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

A DISABLED motorist who was left stranded at one of the toll plazas approaching the Limerick Tunnel has received a free electronic tag from the operators of the tunnel, Direct Route.

A DISABLED motorist who was left stranded at one of the toll plazas approaching the Limerick Tunnel has received a free electronic tag from the operators of the tunnel, Direct Route.

Thalidomide survivor Leigh Gath, who has no arms or legs, drives a specially adapted car and, therefore, is entitled to use toll roads across the country for free.

But, because of her condition, Leigh, is unable to put coins into automated or unmanned machines at toll booths without assistance.

Although the main toll plaza on the Limerick Tunnel is manned 24 hours a day, the plaza at Clonmacken is not.

As a result, Leigh says on two occasions over the past week she was left stranded for several minutes when she arrived at the Clonmacken toll plaza.

Because she could not press the intercom for assistance, she had to beep her horn in order to alert staff - who then opened the barrier for her.

Leigh says she has had similar difficulties at a number of smaller toll plazas elsewhere in the country.

Don O’Sullivan, general manager, of Direct Route, confirmed the company spoke with Ms Leigh after she contacted them and he said an electronic tag has been installed on her car.

“It was an extremely unusual event and we did apolgise to her straight away,” he said adding that the company places a strong emphasis on customer service.

Sean O’Neill of the National Roads Authority confirmed that Ms Leigh had contacted it about her recent experiences but he said the matter had been resolved.