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Connacht Tribune

Motorist failed breath test over mouthwash

Declan Tierney

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A representative from the Medical Bureau of Road Safety, which analyses drunk driving samples, has been summoned to a sitting of Tuam District Court over an unprecedented case that came for hearing.

A motorist failed a roadside breath test as he had gargled mouthwash, did not have any alcohol in his system but a subsequent test revealed traces of an opiate class drug and cannabinoids.

However, the defendant told Tuam Court that he was on tablets for back pain and his solicitor Danny McGrath produced a doctor’s prescription to the court to this effect.

Judge James Faughnan adjourned the case to determine the nature of the drugs and requested a member of the Medical Bureau to explain the contents of the sample before the court.

Mr McGrath informed the court that he was told by the Medical Bureau that his client would have to cover the cost of a representative appearing to give evidence – this is estimated to be in the region of €1,000.

The solicitor said that his client was not in a position to do this but Judge Faughnan said that it was up to the State to prove their case and he believed that the costs of a representative from the Medical Bureau appearing was not a matter for the defendant.

He then issued a summons for a Medical Bureau representative to attend court on September 9 next. Judge Faughnan said that if one did not appear, he would issue a bench warrant for their arrest.

A previous sitting of Tuam Court heard how Jarlath Crisham from 43 Athenry Road, Tuam was stopped at a checkpoint near Milltown by Garda Paul Crowe who required him to provide a roadside breath test.

He failed a breath sample as the court was told that he had earlier gargled mouthwash.

He was arrested on suspicion of drink driving and taken to Tuam Garda Station where he provided a urine sample to a nurse who was called to administer this process.

The sample was sent off for analysis and it showed that there was no alcohol reading but four months later a report came back from the Medical Bureau of Road Safety indicating that there were traces of an opiate class drug and cannabinoids.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Galway to complete vaccine roll-out by end of the summer

Denise McNamara

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Ninety-five year old Margaret Kenny was first person to be administered the Covid-19 vaccination Practice Nurse Deirdre Furey at the Surgery Athenry.

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

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Connacht Tribune

Galway meteorologist enjoying new-found fame in the sun!

Denise McNamara

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Linda Hughes, presenting the RTÉ weather forecast live in studio.

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

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Connacht Tribune

Great-great-grandmother home after Covid, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery

Dave O'Connell

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Mary Quinn...back home after an incredible few months.

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

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