Temporary traffic lights at a dangerous stretch of road in North Galway is resulting in a build-up of traffic into the town of Dunmore.
The lights were erected last week on the main Tuam to Dunmore road at a location known as Twenty Minute Hill.
Galway County Council’s intention is to widen the road at this location – and while there is agreement with a landowner on one side, the same cannot be said with the landowner on the other side as negotiations continue.
If there was consent of both property owners, then the road widening programme – designed and funded by Transport Infrastructure Ireland – could be completed by this time next year.
However, if the Council has to go down the road of compulsory purchase, then the whole process could take as long as four years to complete, according to some officials.
The matter was raised by Cllr Karey McHugh at a meeting of Tuam Municipal Council when she said that traders in Dunmore were concerned about the loss of business as a result of the lights.
Cllr McHugh asked for some clarity as to how long the lights would be in place as she added that there seemed to be some conflicting views on that front.
Senior Engineer John Coyle explained that the village enhancement scheme currently taking place in Dunmore was a contributory factor to any traffic congestion.
He said that the lights were synchronised so that motorists were left waiting less than two minutes for a changeover. However, he agreed to keep an eye on the situation.
With regard to the length of time the lights will be in operation, Mr Coyle said that it was dependent on the outcome of discussions with one of the landowners concerned.
He said that if agreement could be reached all round, then there was every possibility that the road widening project could be completed by the end of next year.
Cllr Tom McHugh said that the town enhancement scheme was progressing very well and it was a case of having to get used of the lights on the main road until the works were completed.
He did express some concern that there may be lights erected at Bridge Street in Dunmore – which is extremely narrow and two cars can only pass with extreme caution – but he was assured that this was not the case.
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