By Sean Moriarty
Wild deer roaming roads in the Killarney hinterland has reached crisis point according to a group of concerned residents from the Ballydowney and Fossa areas.
The group - some of whom have lost family members in fatal accidents involving deer - have being campaigning for over a year now but are growing increasingly frustrated at the lack of action by the National Parks and Wildlife Services.
Up to 10 residents called on elected members to engage with the NPWS in an effort to solve the on-going issues at Wednesday’s Killarney Municipal District meeting.
Gillian Hughes, whose sister Paula died as a result of a collision with wandering deer in 2006, led the deputation.
“It is too late for us, we have already lost loved ones but it is only a matter of time before there is another fatal accident,” she told the meeting.
The group say that fencing, vegetation clearance and electronic signs will all help prevent further accidents and deaths.
“What is the cost? What is the cost of another human life,” she said.
They believe that incorrect statistics are one of the problems. Official Road Safety Authority figures say that last year there were 99 cases of collisions involving animals in Kerry and only five of these were deer related.
Sergeant Michael Murphy of Caherciveen Garda Station, who is also a local resident, told the meeting that last year there were 23 cases of deer related incidents in the Killarney area compared to 10 in 2016. He said that the Ballydowney to Fossa and the Muckross to Ladies View areas were the worst affected in the locality.
By comparison there were four in Kenmare and one each in Glenbeigh and Caherciveen.
Local councillor Brendan Cronin who introduced the deputation to the meeting said that there’s a chronic problem with deer on the road.
“The volume of incidents not reported would fill this room five times over,” he said.
“The NPWS must take responsibility for what they own. Deer are beautiful animals but they are not very pretty coming through the windscreen.”
Killarney town engineer John Ahern said there are plans to do road realignment and footpath works in the Fossa area, but they are not progressing as fast as he would like.
However, he told the meeting that he would look at the provision of electronic signs as a matter of urgency.
“A recent meeting with the NPWS, they told me they have carried out a culling programme but I am not qualified enough to say if this is good enough or not,” said Mr Ahern. “This stretch of road is part of an overall scheme, a scheme not happening as fast as we like, but I give a commitment to advance the signage.”
The deputation also asked the Council to set up an urgent meeting with the NPWS service. The Council acknowledge that there is an issue with land ownership in the area, some of the roadside property is owned by the NPWS and some of it is owned by Fáilte Ireland.
It is understood that the NPWS do not want to put a fence around the National Park, as anything that would prevent deer from escaping would also prevent access for members of the public.
“Deer are rampant,” Mayor Michael Gleeson said. “The NPWS say that if a fence was in place and deer got out, they would not be able to get back in.”
Cllr Niall ‘Botty’ O’Callaghan, like all his elected colleagues, supported the deputation.
“This is the most important issue in Killarney,” he said. “There is an infra-red system that I have seen in America. The breaker is at a certain height so it won’t be triggered by a hedgehog or a rabbit.”
Develop skills and improve employability
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis by Education and Training Boards (ETBs) nationwide and are open to potential participants of all ages and backgrounds including school leavers, mature learners and those in or seeking employment. Developed in partnership with industry representatives […]
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors
Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis by Education and Training Boards (ETBs) nationwide and are open to potential participants of all ages and backgrounds including school leavers, mature learners and those in or seeking employment.
Developed in partnership with industry representatives and employers, these programmes combine learning in the classroom with a minimum of 30 percent of learning on-the-job. The focus is on ‘learning on the go’ and developing perspectives that are in tune with the ever evolving world of work. They span across a range of industry sectors including business and retail, media, manufacturing, agriculture, horticulture and mariculture, care, construction, engineering, animal science, fashion and beauty, finance, ICT, hospitality, sports and leisure, and logistics.
At the core of the scheme is a strong collaboration with the ETBs in the provision of work-based learning opportunities on existing and new programmes. Traineeships lead to an award at Levels 4-6 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) and are between six to 24 months in duration. Over 75 programmes are available nationwide – although not all of them will be available nationally at all times – and the content, award and duration may vary. They are designed for flexible delivery to include online, face-to-face and blended learning.
Second level or higher education students who are interested in participating in a Traineeship Programme should contact their local ETB, adult learners should contact the Adult Education Guidance Service through their local ETB, and jobseekers will be able to access information through their local Intreo Office or Local Employment Service. For those currently unemployed, a training allowance or income support may be available. You can check out the range of opportunities offered through Traineeships nationwide on www.fetchcourses.ie and more locally check out the www.kerrycollege.ie.
Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore, and Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She is also a Career Consultant – For details see www.mycareerplan.ie or follow @mycareerplan on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Return to work courses
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return to the workforce. Courses are offered in different areas including Information and Communications Technology (ICT), medical technologies, cybersecurity, sustainable energy and financial services. The courses range from certificate to master’s degree level – Levels 6 […]
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return to the workforce.
Courses are offered in different areas including Information and Communications Technology (ICT), medical technologies, cybersecurity, sustainable energy and financial services.
The courses range from certificate to master’s degree level – Levels 6 to 9 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). Most of the courses are part-time and last for one year or less, but there are some full-time courses.
You can access a free Springboard+ course, if you are getting a qualifying social welfare payment such as Jobseeker’s Allowance, Jobseeker’s Benefit or the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP). You can get a full list of qualifying payments for Springboard+ on citizensinformation.ie
If you are not getting a qualifying social welfare payment, you will have to meet the residency criteria for Springboard+.
You can also apply for a Springboard+ course if:
* You are a qualified adult of working age (under 66) on someone else’s social welfare payment
* You are signing for social insurance credits
* You are on an employment support scheme such as Community Employment (CE) or TUS
To apply for a Springboard+ course, you choose the course(s) you are interested in on springboardcourses.ie and apply online, following the instructions on the website. You can apply for up to 10 courses, but you can only take one course.
If you are getting a social welfare payment, you should notify your Intreo Centre or local Social Welfare Branch Office and check what further steps (if any) you need to take.
If Springboard+ doesn’t meet your needs, there are several other ways to go back to education.
During COVID-19, you can find comprehensive integrated information online at citizensinformation.ie/covid19/ and you can get daily updates on what’s changed on Twitter at @citizensinfo. You can also get information and advice from:
Tralee on Tel: Call 0761 07 7860, Monday – Friday (10am-4pm)
The Citizens Information Phone Service: Call 0761 07 4000, Monday to Friday, 9am – 8pm
Our national call back service: Visit citizensinformation.ie/callback to request a phone call from an information officer
Develop skills and improve employability
By Niamh Dwyer, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors Traineeships are developed and delivered on an ongoing basis...
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Return to work courses
Answer: Springboard+ provides free higher education courses for people who are unemployed (or were self-employed) and those looking to return...
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