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Another accident at nightmare junction

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CRASH: Another crash occurred at the Lewis Road Junction on Tuesday evening between a car and a motorcyclist. Photo: Michelle Crean

By Michelle Crean

Locals voiced their concerns after yet another accident this week between the Lewis Road Junction onto the bypass.

On Tuesday evening, at approximately 6pm, a car and a motorcyclist collided when one vehicle exited right from the junction.

The Killarney Advertiser took photos at the scene of the crash, which was attended by local Gardai, and it sparked a huge reaction on our Facebook page - reaching over 15,000 people, with 35 shares and 51 comments as locals voiced their concerns that something urgent needs to be done before a fatality occurs.

In June, newly elected Killarney councillors vowed to keep the pressure on central Government in an effort to get the much needed northern relief road into construction phase – which could take up to seven or more years to complete.

The junction has been the scene of several fatal accidents in recent years and plans for its realignment are seen as a major priority in Killarney by both residents and politicians alike.

In May, the Killarney Advertiser ran a story showing an artist’s impression of what the new road layout and adjacent community area will look like.

The plans show a new pedestrian underbridge linking Bridgefield housing estate to a new recreation area which will be constructed in the cut-off lands between the existing and new Kilcummin roads.

However, concerns remain that a fatal accident could occur at the junction before works begin.

Mayor of Kerry, Cllr Niall Kelleher, told the Killarney Advertiser this week that he will press the Council to get planned works started as soon as possible, in two phases if possible, to prevent further similar accidents.

“What I’ll be asking the Council to do now is to do the work in two stages, to implement a left hand turn only, particularly do the work required from the Lewis Road Junction to Cleeny, and whatever work needs to be done. The sooner this is done the better.”

“Inaction is not an option at this stage”

Opinion: By Rory O’Brien

They say the definition of insanity is repeatedly doing the same thing but expecting a different outcome. Well in the case of the Lewis Road junction and the Killarney bypass, that insanity manifests itself in the lack of any intervention to the current traffic flow, expecting the regular accidents to stop.

There are now regular accidents at this junction, ranging from minor to loss of life.

But still, our esteemed elected officials deem changes only worthy of press releases, but no actual changes to the status quo. And so, the driving public toss the dice and take their chances. Throw into this organised chaos of traffic policy, tourists in rental cars, already driving on what is for them the wrong side of the road, and you have a scene usually found at Birds Bizarre. But alas, the implications of collision does not end in a laugh and scream of excitement.

The reality of two vehicles colliding is a terrifying ordeal leading to trauma, injury and shock. The dogs in the street know that this junction is an accident waiting to happen, although that wait can be only a week or two-long. It's a regular occurrence, and that's only counting actual collisions.

I personally have witnessed three near misses, and not two weeks ago, wrote my car off into the side of a rental BMW. Having admitted responsibility for the accident, the driver said he thought he had right of way. In fairness, there are no roadside instructions to the contrary. We shook hands, exchanged details and laughed nervously at the outcome. He had his wife and son in the car, and I should have had my daughter in the passenger seat. She went to pick-up last-minute bits and pieces for her imminent start to Fifth Year instead.

The passenger side took the majority of the impact! The possible outcomes don't bear thinking about - but thinking is what I have been doing.

And so, what is the answer? The only definite answer is that inaction is not an option at this stage. Make Lewis Road left turn only, put up accident black spot signs, reduce the speed limit to 20kph, erect yield signs for the bypass to Lewis Road, put up enlarged photos of previous crashes, hire a clown holding a poster saying, 'slow down or die'. From sensible to surreal, the options are there. I can't say for sure what would work. I can say for sure that doing nothing is insanity.

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Women bravely bare all for Kerry’s first ‘Dip in the Nip’

By Michelle Crean  It really was girl power at its finest – as 170 women of all ages braved the elements on Sunday to bare all for charity at the weekend. Shore Acre in Camp was the location which was only revealed to the participants for Kerry’s first ever ‘Dip in the Nip’. And amongst […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

It really was girl power at its finest – as 170 women of all ages braved the elements on Sunday to bare all for charity at the weekend.

Shore Acre in Camp was the location which was only revealed to the participants for Kerry’s first ever ‘Dip in the Nip’. And amongst the all female grouping were some Killarney ladies who joined in the empowering adventure for what was described as “a special and unforgettable morning” all in aid of Recovery Haven Kerry.

According to Marisa Reidy from Recovery Haven, the women were of all ages and all walks of life who came together for so many personal reasons.

“Some were still on their own cancer journey, some were celebrating coming out the other side and of course, many were there to honour friends and loved ones who they had lost to cancer, but we were all equal on the day – flaws and all,” Marisa, who also took part in the event, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“It was a truly uplifting and exhilarating experience and we are so, so grateful to each and every lady who joined us for a morning we will never forget. One woman described it as ‘companionship among strangers’ and that really sums it up perfectly. It was emotional, there were some tears, but lots of laughter and we couldn’t have asked for anything more. When the ladies hit the water, they all formed a circle and held hands in a gesture that was totally unplanned – it just happened organically and it was quite overwhelming.”

She added that a very special mention has to be made to Michaela and John Edwards and their team from Wild Water Adventures for their support and expertise in ensuring no stone was left unturned in making it a fabulous, safe event.

“It was an all-female team from beginning to end, from our own volunteers, stewards, registration, Gardai, teas and coffees, lifeguards, sea rescue – girl power at its finest! Now all that’s left to do is start planning for 2022!”

Donations are still being taken via the link on the Recovery Haven Kerry Facebook page.

“So far we are close on €9,000 which is just fabulous.”

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Double the car fun at Killarney Racecourse

A new collaboration between Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club and Cars n’Coffee Killarney was hailed a success by event organisers. On Sunday last, between 250 and 300 cars went on display at Killarney Racecourse. The range of cars covered everything from vintage, classic, retro and modern from a 1936 Rolls Royce to a 2017 […]

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A new collaboration between Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club and Cars n’Coffee Killarney was hailed a success by event organisers.

On Sunday last, between 250 and 300 cars went on display at Killarney Racecourse.

The range of cars covered everything from vintage, classic, retro and modern from a 1936 Rolls Royce to a 2017 Mercedes Benz AMG.

It was the first time that the local vintage club and the Cars n’Coffee team came together to run an event and it could pave the way for similar such occasions in the future.

“The event attracted a huge cross section of car enthusiasts from all different age brackets which was very important,” Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club’s Tom Leslie, who was one of the main organisers, said.

“The owners were there with the bonnets of the cars open and proud as punch of what they were showing. There was a huge amount of public there and loads of new members signed up to our club.”

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