GARDAÍ are still detecting a significant number of motorists in Galway who are either driving without wearing a seatbelt or who have passengers in their vehicle – including children – who are not properly secured.
This week, a senior Garda officer said that it was ‘completely unacceptable in this day and age’ that there were still cars being driven with occupants not properly being belted up.
Inspector Conor Madden of the Garda Roads Policing Unit in Galway, told the Connacht Tribune that almost every day, there were detections for people travelling in cars who were not belted up properly.
“It really is hard to credit that such a basic element of road safety is being neglected. We come across drivers and passenger not wearing their seatbelts as well as children in the backseats of cars who are not secured properly.
“In the event of an accident, such a situation can be potentially catastrophic. We are asking every driver not to move their cars until everyone is belted up – we want drivers to adopt this as a standard practice every time they sit behind the wheel,” said Inspector Madden.
He added that while Galway had fared out reasonably well over recent Bank Holiday weekends in terms of serious accidents, the national figures indicated that such periods on Irish roads are high-risk.
“This weekend, we have the Galway Races and the Bank Holiday with many people being on holidays, it will be a very busy time on roads in the county. We will be having a major presence on the road network over this long weekend.
“Mandatory Intoxicant Testing [for both drugs and alcohol], speed checks, a crackdown on distraction driving [use of mobile phones and other devices] and the failure to wear seatbelts, will all be priority areas for us,” said Inspector Madden.
He also asked drivers to avoid fatigue situations at all costs, and if they do happen to find themselves driving when tiredness strikes, to pull over, take a 20-minute nap, have a tea or coffee and ‘get in’ some fresh air before resuming their journey.
See full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Galway to complete vaccine roll-out by end of the summer
On the first anniversary of Covid-19’s deadly arrival into Ireland, the head of the Saolta hospital group has predicted that all who want the vaccine will have received it by the end of the summer.
Tony Canavan, CEO of the seven public hospitals, told the Connacht Tribune that the HSE was planning to set up satellite centres from the main vaccination hub at the Galway Racecourse to vaccinate people on the islands and in the most rural parts of the county.
While locations have not yet been signed up, the HSE was looking at larger buildings with good access that could be used temporarily to carry out the vaccination programme over a short period.
“We do want to reach out to rural parts of the region instead of drawing in people from the likes of Clifden and over from the islands. The plan is to set up satellites from the main centre, sending out small teams out to the likes of Connemara,” he explained.
“Ideally we’d run it as close as possible to the same time that the main centres are operating once that is set up. Communication is key – if people know we’re coming, it will put people’s minds at rest.”
Get all the latest Covid-19 coverage in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie
Galway meteorologist enjoying new-found fame in the sun!
Growing up in Galway where four seasons in a day is considered a soft one, Linda Hughes always had a keen interest in the weather.
But unlike most Irish people, instead of just obsessing about it, she actually went and pursued it as a career.
The latest meteorologist to appear on RTE’s weather forecasts hails from Porridgtown, Oughterard, and brings with her an impressive background in marine forecasting.
She spent six years in Aerospace and Marine International in Aberdeen, Scotland, which provides forecasts for the oil and gas industry.
The 33-year-old was a route analyst responsible for planning routes for global shipping companies. She joined the company after studying experimental physics in NUIG and doing a masters in applied meteorology in Redding in the UK.
“My job was to keep crews safe and not lose cargo by picking the best route to get them to their destination as quickly as possibly but avoiding hurricanes, severe storms,” she explains.
“It was a very interesting job, I really enjoyed it but it was very stressful as you were dealing with bad weather all the time because there’s always bad weather in some part of the world.”
Read the full interview with Linda Hughes in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie
Great-great-grandmother home after Covid, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery
Her family are understandably calling her their miracle mum – because an 81 year old great-great-grandmother from Galway has bounced back from Covid-19, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery since Christmas…to return hale and hearty, to her own home.
But Mary Quinn’s family will never forget the trauma of the last three months, as the Woodford woman fought back against all of the odds from a series of catastrophic set-backs.
The drama began when Mary was found with a bleed on her brain on December 16. She was admitted to Portiuncula Hospital, and transferred to Beaumont a day later where she underwent an emergency procedure – only to then suffer a stroke.
To compound the crisis, while in Beaumont, she contracted pneumonia, suffered heart failure and developed COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – the inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs.
“Christmas without mom; things did not look good,” said her daughter Catherine Shiel.
But the worst was still to come – because before Mary was discharged, she contracted Covid-19.
Read Mary’s full, heart-warming story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie