THERE could be a fatality in Patrickswell unless an electricity pole is moved from the side of the road, it has been claimed.
Local Fine Gael election candidate Fergus Kilcoyne believes an ESB-owned poll, which lies a few metres away from the payment on the Clarina Road is an accident waiting to happen.
The poll lies on the corner with the main street in the village.
Since it is a blind corner, Mr Kilcoyne is worried about vehicles running into it.
The danger is already clear with a road sign in front of it already being dented from oncoming vehicles.
“This steel poll is acting as a safety barrier to the ESB pole,” he said, “The steel poll is taking the rap. But if it breaks, it is going to bring down the ESB poll with the electric cables overhead.”
Mr Kilcoyne has not been made aware of how much it would cost to move the pole – and the ESB could not shed any light on this.
“But,” he argued: “What price can you put on a person’s life?”
He added: “If you come into Patrickswell, and turn around a sharp corner, you don’t expect to see a pole in the road. If you smash into a pole like this, you can break your neck very easily.”
He believes the positioning of the poles is due to “poor planning” from the ESB. However, Pat Nugent, the area manager for the ESB says the pole has been in place for between 40 and 50 years, and its position is most likely due to the realignment of roadways and pathways in Patrickswell.
“It appears to me that the pole in question has been in situ for 40 to 50 years, going on the network configuration. It also appears that some party/ local authority may have carried out work in the past widening the roadway and installing a footpath. This work has left the pole protruding in the roadway,” he said.
In order for the post to be moved, Limerick County Council would most likely have to pay the ESB for the work.
Mr Nugent said he would engage with County Council to see if they would be willing to stump up the cash.
He added that it is too early at this stage to place a cost on any relocation of poles.