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Prepare your home for the onset of winter

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By John Healy of Healy Insurances

As winter is upon us, here are some tips to help you prepare and protect your home and property from inclement weather.

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CHECK FOR CRACKS

Check there are no cracks in any bricks, slates or tiles as water can get into them, freeze, expand and cause damage. All parts of a fixed water system, such as boilers, radiator stop values, taps and all piping should be inspected by a qualified plumber at least once a year.

CLEAN THE CHIMNEY

Don’t forget to sweep the chimney as upswept chimneys are a potential fire hazard especially after a period of dry weather. Clearing your gutters and drains will go a long way to protecting your property from rain damage. Clearing moss from driveways and patios is also recommended.

Apply insulating lagging to pipes particularly in cold areas like the attic, outbuildings or where pipes are external. Water tanks and cisterns should also be fitted with adequate lagging insulation. Please ensure that insulation is on top of roof piping, not under, to benefit from heating coming from below.

ALARMS

Check all the house alarms are in working order; smoke, carbon monoxide and intruder alarms. Leaving the attic door open while the heating is on will allow warm air to reach pipes high up in the attic and prevent them from freezing. Know where your stop valve is, so that if you do have a leak, you can turn off the water.

If you are away from home during the winter set the heating to come on when the temperature drops below a certain point to prevent freezing. The coldest time is between 1am and 3am.

UNOCCUPIED HOMES

If your home is to be unoccupied for an extended period, inform your insurers and drain the water system so that freezing of pipes cannot occur.

Finally it is recommended to make sure the whole family know what to if you have a burst pipe or storm damage. Please check on the well-being of elderly neighbours and ask a friend or relation to check your house on a daily basis if you are away during the winter months.

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Future Kerry railway plans revealed

By Sean Moriarty Elected members of Kerry County Council have led calls for Iarnród Éireann’s timetable to fall into line with airline schedule at Kerry Airport. On Monday of this week Barry Kenny of Iarnród Éireann gave a presentation to elected members of the council. During the meeting he outlined some of the railway company’s plans […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Elected members of Kerry County Council have led calls for Iarnród Éireann’s timetable to fall into line with airline schedule at Kerry Airport.

On Monday of this week Barry Kenny of Iarnród Éireann gave a presentation to elected members of the council.

During the meeting he outlined some of the railway company’s plans and ambitions from now until 2027.

These include an increase in frequency on the Tralee to Mallow line.

It is hoped to have one train an hour operating on the line at peak times and two-hourly off-peak.

In a perfect world, the rail station at Farranfore would be placed across the road from the airport and not a 1km walk away but such a move is not likely to happen.

Cllr Norma Moriarty, of the Kenmare Municipal District explained how she was on trip to Yorkshire a few years ago.

“I flew from Kerry to Manchester and was able to get a connecting train to Yorkshire without ever leaving the airport building,” she said. “The people I was visiting were very surprised to hear me talk about this so much – it is normal to them.”

Under the Strategy 2027 plan Killarney rail station will get repainted and new signs will be put in place during 2022.

Additional parking spaces will be created at Farranfore Railway station and this lead to calls for a similar expansion at Rathmore.

“A lot of people from South Kerry use Rathmore railway station,” said local councillor Niall Kelleher. “They drive up from Kenmare and cut across by Glenflesk.”

Mr Kenny said he would take the Rathmore comments back to the Iarnród Éireann engineer in charge of parking strategy.

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Walking and cycling projects set for upgrade 

Commuters and nature enthusiasts will benefit from €4.13m in funding allocated to Kerry County Council for walking and cycling projects. €350,000 has been allocated for Transport/Mobility Plans for Killarney, Tralee and Listowel. Locally €704,835 is being given towards an interconnected network of cycleways on Rock Road, while there’s €70,000 funding for the Deerpark Road/Gealscoil Junction to include […]

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Commuters and nature enthusiasts will benefit from €4.13m in funding allocated to Kerry County Council for walking and cycling projects.

€350,000 has been allocated for Transport/Mobility Plans for Killarney, Tralee and Listowel.

Locally €704,835 is being given towards an interconnected network of cycleways on Rock Road, while there’s €70,000 funding for the Deerpark Road/Gealscoil Junction to include an interconnected network of cycleways. €300,000 is planned for an interconnected network of cycleways for the Gaelscoil Road/Chestnut Drive area, while The Flesk Walkway and Cycleway, Killarney is to get €123,866, as well as a further €186,527 for Rock Road.

Deputy Government Chief Whip, Brendan Griffin TD has said the funding from the National Transport Authority (NTA) will deliver high quality upgrades to walking and cycling infrastructure, with sustainable transport modes vital as the county emerges from the pandemic.

“I am pleased that Kerry County Council has been awarded funding which is part of an overall total of €289 million for approximately 1,200 Active Travel projects across the country,” Deputy Griffin said.

“Ensuring we have a good and efficient transport system in Kerry is essential for the future as we aim to make our communities and town centres more vibrant, in addition to making commuting to work and school safer and easier. Over the past two years we have spent more time enjoying our outdoor amenities and investing in active travel will also help us to meet our climate change obligations.”

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