Two accidents within 20 minutes on 'black ice' in Limerick

Maria Flannery


Maria Flannery

Two accidents within 20 minutes on 'black ice' in Limerick

The scene of the accident this morning at Glenameade, Pallaskenry

TWO separate car accidents occurred at the same spot within 20 minutes of each other, this Friday morning.

Conditions in Pallaskenry on the L1241, the area from Hegarty's Cross to the Grand Gates in Glenameade, were “extremely slippy” this morning due to black ice.

The have prompted local councillor Emmett O’Brien to again call for gritting of the road, which is not currently serviced by the council’s gritting scheme because it is a local route.

At around 7.30am, a car spun on the ice and landed in the hedge, said Cllr O’Brien, who lives close to the scene.

Twenty minutes later, there was another single-vehicle accident at the same location.

Two units of the ambulance service as well as gardai attended the scene, in which the car collided with a wall.

The only occupant of the car, a female in her 40s, suffered abrasions to the head and bruising. Two airbags were deployed in the collision.

“How many more times do people have to be injured before the council will make an exception and grit L1241. Four years reporting this and the council are still hiding behind procedures. Luckily the driver was not seriously injured,” said Cllr O’Brien.

“This is around the 12th accident in the space of four years in the exact same spot. It’s such a high-traffic road and there is a high incident rate. The council is not interested because it’s not a regional or national road,” he said.

The councillor is calling on Limerick City and County Council to make an exception to the scheme, which prioritises national and regional main roads, and grit this local route when there is icy weather.

“I am asking the council to make an exception, given the history of the road but also in view of the fact that it’s servicing a national school, a secondary school and third level institution in Pallaskenry.”

A spokesperson at the council said:

“With approximately 4,000kms of roadway in Co. Limerick, it would be unrealistic to expect that every road and pedestrian area in the county can be treated. Therefore, priority has be given to National Route system (Priority 1) which carries the most intensive volumes of commuter traffic. Every effort is made to ensure that this network is maintained open for traffic at all times in spite of weather conditions. In extreme weather conditions i.e. a continuous spell of sub-zero temperatures, attention is also given to regional and local road networks on the basis of need and the availability of resources.

“All Limerick routes covered under the winter road maintenance programme are gritted based on the latest information from the Road DSS system, ice prediction software, put in place by the then named National Roads Authority (NRA), now Transport Infrastructure Ireland.

“This involves daily monitoring by the Council’s Roads Engineers throughout the season which usually lasts from mid-October to end of April each year.

“The roads in the Winter Maintenance programme account for almost 85% of all Limerick’s traffic,” said the spokesperson.