Date Published: 14-Mar-2011
By Denise McNamara
A Galway man has vowed to leave their Japanese home behind and evacuate his three children in the event that the exclusion zone around one of the nuclear plants is widened.
John Sheehy from Ballybane has spoken of the sheer terror he experienced in the aftermath of the fourth-strongest earthquake worldwide since 1900.
He had just picked up his six-year-old daughter Ellen from kindergarten last Friday when the earth started to move at 2.45pm He ran out into the street but was unable to stand up.
“I had to sit down and I cradled my daughter in my arms. Roof tiles were flying off and smashing all around us. My car bounced two feet off the ground. It went on for five minutes. It seemed like an eternity. I can’t describe how terrifying it was,” he recalled.
He and his daughter walked the 20 minutes to the local school. On the way an aftershock resulted in a telegraph pole crashing beside them.They found all the school children gathered in the sports ground unharmed. He collected his two sons, Conor, 12, and Cain, 8.
Because of the failing mobile phone network, he then had a tense two-and-a-half hour wait before making contact with his wife, Chikako.
They got a nine minute warning that a tsunami was on its way.Their city Kashima – roughly the same population as Galway and located 150km from Tokyo – escaped the worst wrath of the giant wave because of its relative height.
“We got hit hard – there’s significant damage to houses, windows smashed, certain houses collapsed, roads were ripped up. But it’s nothing compared to what happened in the north where whole towns were completely wiped out,” John explained.
They live 150km south of the crippled Fukushima atomic plant, where two explosions have been reported and 200,000 people have been evacuated from the area
.“If they extend the exclusion zone from 20km to 50km I wouldn’t be hesitating. I’m not going to risk my kids’ health. We’ll get out for a few months until the radioactive levels go down. I’ll be knocking on my mother’s door,” added Mr Sheehy.
Read more in today’s Connacht Sentinel
Galway ‘Park and Ride’ could become permanent
Date Published: 07-May-2013
A park ‘n’ ride scheme from Carnmore into Galway city could become a permanent service if there is public demand.
That’s according to the Chief Executive of Galway Chamber of Commerce, Michael Coyle.
The pilot scheme will begin at 7.20 next Monday morning, May 13th.
Motorists will be able to park cars at the airport carpark in Carnmore and avail of a bus transfer to Forster Street in the city.
Buses will depart every 20 minutes at peak times and every 30 minutes at offpeak times throughout the day, at a cost of 2 euro per journey.
Tuam awaits UK hay import as overnight rainfall adds to fodder crisis
Date Published: 09-May-2013
Tuam is now awaiting a third import of hay from the UK as overnight rainfall has increased pressure on farmers struggling to source fodder.
A total of ten loads are expected at Connacht Gold stores throughout the West with a load expected at the Airglooney outlet this evening or tomorrow.
Farmers throughout the county have been struggling to cope with the animal feed shortage and a below than normal grass growth due to unseasonal weather conditions.
Overnight rainfall in the Galway area has also added to the problem making ground conditions in many areas are quite poor.
Joe Waldron, Agricultual Advisor with Connacht Gold says farmers in short supply can contact the Airglooney outlet on 093 – 24101.
Transport Minister urges end to Bus Eireann strike action
Date Published: 12-May-2013
The Transport Minister is urging drivers at Bus Éireann to engage in talks with management, in an effort to bring their strike action to an end.
There were no Bus Éireann services operating out of Galway today as a result of nationwide strike action by staff affiliated with the national bus and rail union.
Up to 20 Bus Éireann drivers are continuing to picket outside the bus depot at the docks in the city this evening.
Drivers from other unions have decided not to cross the picket line and go into work today – causing the disruption to be even worse.
Bus drivers are protesting against five million euro worth of cuts to their overtime and premium pay – cuts which Bus Eireann says are vital to ensure the future viability of the company.
The majority of services nationwide are disrupted, and the union say strike action will continue until management are willing to go back into negotiations.
However, it’s not expected to affect school services next week.
Galway bay fm news understands that around 70 percent, or over 100 Galway bus Eireann drivers are affiliated with the NBRU.