Connacht

  • Irish airspace has reopened following a radar problem last night at Shannon Air Traffic Control, which led to the closure of the majority of Irish airspace and the suspension of flights in and out of Cork and Shannon Airports.

    The Irish Aviation Authority has reopened Irish airspace and confirmed this morning that flights have resumed at Cork and Shannon airports, while an investigation is underway.

    Flights into and out of Dublin and Belfast airports haven't been affected.

    At Ireland West Airport Knock, yesterday evening's Aer Lingus flight to Gatwick was cancelled as a result of the incident.

    A spokesman for the airport says all flights today are expected to operate as scheduled.

  • In Galway East, all three seats have been filled, with Independent Sean Canney , Ciaran Cannon of FG and Fianna Fail's Anne Rabbitte all being returned to Dail Eireann.

    In Galway West, it could be another long day, as no candidate has yet been elected in the 5-seater.

    Counting in Salthill resumes at 9.30 this morning, with Sinn Fein's Mairead Farrell likely to be the first elected.

    And in Sligo / Leitrim, just one of the four seats has been filled, with Sinn Fein's Martin Kenny topping the poll.

  • Supermacs has confirmed that it has now reopened all of its outlets in Mayo.

    The Ballyhaunis outlet was the latest Supermac's to start providing a limited service to customers, as part of the phased reopening of outlets.

    A spokesman for the company said all 9 Supermacs outlets in Mayo are now providing hot cooked meals to the public, while fully implementing WHO and Government guidelines regarding social distancing for staff and customers.

    Supermacs are providing the service through Collection, Take Away or Drive Thru - depending on the outlet.

  • The All-Ireland ladies senior, intermediate and junior club championship semi-finals will be played this Sunday.

    Galway's Kilkerrin-Clonberne host Foxrock-Cabinteely of Dublin in the senior semi-final at 2pm.

    In the intermediate semi-final, St Nathy's of Sligo take on St Paul's of Antrim in Belfast at one o'clock

    and in the junior semi-final, CL McHales of Mayo are away to Edendork of Tyrone also at 1pm.

     

     

  • The Garda Ombudsman Commission is investigating an incident in Castlerea in the early hours of Sunday morning in which a Garda was allegedly assaulted.

    The incident occurred at about 1am on Sunday morning, when a Garda was allegedly assaulted by two men at Roselawn, Castlerea.

    The male Garda and the suspected offenders were taken to hospital.

    The matter has now been referred to GSOC, under Section 102 of the Garda Act 2005.

    A spokesperson for the Garda Ombudsman has confirmed to Midwest News that the incident has been referred to them, and is being examined to determine if an investigation is warranted into the circumstances involved.

     

     

  • Allianz Football League 

    Division 1 
    Galway 1-12
    Donegal 0-14

    Division 2
    Roscommon 1-17
    Tipperary 3-09 

    Division 3
    Sligo 1-16
    Wexford 1-13

    Division 4
    Laois 3-16
    Leitrim 3-10 

    Allianz Hurling League
    Division 2B
    Mayo 3-15
    Armagh 2-13

    Division 3A
    Monaghan 0-16
    Roscommon 1-13

    Division 3B
    Sligo 2-19
    Cavan 0-04

    Lancashire 0-15
    Leitrim 0-14

  • Funding of almost €6.5 million is being announced today for three major projects in Co Mayo, under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.

    The Mayo-based Minister for Rural & Community Development Michael Ring will today announce a national package of €62 million in funding for 26 projects across the country.

    In Mayo, over €2.6 million goes to Ballintubber Abbey, to develop a cultural and heritage centre in the east wing of the Abbey.

    Over €1.9 million is being allocated for a 5km extension of the Great Western Greenway between Belclare and Murrisk, along the Clew Bay coastline,

    and over €1.8 million is being allocated for the development of a major tourism hub in Eachléim in the north Mayo Gaeltacht.

  • Almost 1400 couples in Mayo applied for divorce between 2000 and 2017, according to new figures in the Irish Times.

    In 2017, there were 105 divorces in Mayo - up from 69 the previous year.

    In Roscommon, 46 couples divorced in 2017 - up from 43 the previous year, and in Co Galway, 187 couples divorced in  2017 - down from 225 in 2016.

    The figures from the Circuit Court show that Co Carlow has the highest divorce rate in the country, while Leitrim has the lowest, according to figures from the Circuit Court.

    Carlow has been on the top spot since 2015, while Dublin previously had the highest rate of divorce.

    It comes as research from Accord found that most couples run into marriage difficulties after 13 years, with the average age of couples seeking divorce in their mid-40s.

    Divorce only became legal in Ireland in 1996, following a tightly-contested referendum the previous year.

    To apply for a divorce, couples must be living apart for 4 of the previous 5 years.

    This Friday, voters will be asked if they wish to remove this condition or keep it in the Constitution.

     

  • Almost 16% of commercial properties in Mayo are vacant at present, according to the latest figures from GeoDirectory.

    The national commercial vacancy rate is at 13.2% - down slightly on the previous year.

    There are almost 28,000 commercial properties in the country vacant.

    Counties on the West coast had the highest commercial vacancy rates, with Sligo, Leitrim, Galway, Mayo and Roscommon making up the top five.

    Sligo had the highest commercial vacancy rate at almost 19%, while at the other end of the scale, Meath had the lowest vacancy rate at 10.4% showing the widening gap between the East and West coast in terms of commercial activity.

     

     

     

  • Voting is continuing on the Mayo and Galway islands in the 2019 European and Local elections, and the divorce referendum.

    Islanders traditionally vote a day ahead of the mainland, to ensure that ballot boxes are returned to the count centre  in time and are not impacted by bad weather at sea.

    However, this is expected to be the last time islanders will vote ahead of the rest of the country - after the Government recently approved a Bill from Galway-West TD Eamon O'Cuiv that would mean islanders voting on the same day as those on the mainland.

    Today, almost 200 voters on the Mayo islands of Inisturk, Inisbiggle and Clare Island are casting their votes, with polling stations on Clare Island and Inisbiggle remaining open until 8pm, and until 7.30 on Inisturk.

     

     

     

     

  • Almost 8 in 10 septic tank systems in Mayo failed inspection in 2017 and 2018 - the highest failure rate in the country - posing a risk to human health and the environment.

    The Environmental Protection Agency has published a review of over 2,000 inspections of septic tanks in 2017 and 2018, which showed that - across the country- nearly half of the systems failed inspection because they were not built or maintained properly.

    In Mayo, the failure rate rose to 78% - compared to 54% in Sligo, 39% in Co Galway and 0% in Galway City.

    Faulty septic tank systems can contaminate household wells and pollute rivers and streams.

    The EPA is urging householders to fix septic tanks that are not working properly, and says the Government's proposed increase in the septic tank grant scheme will help address the issue.

  • An analysis of various health waiting lists has revealed that there are almost a million patient appointments outstanding in the first half of 2018.

    Fianna Fáil Deputy Leader Dara Calleary has described the situation as a national scandal.

    The Mayo deputy claims that “never before have we seen a situation whereby people have been failed so badly by a government”.

    The vast majority of this list is based on the National Treatment Purchase Fund monthly waiting times. In June 2018 some 717,419 were on the lists compiled by the fund.  However the NTPF does not publish waiting lists for a number of diagnostic scans and the latest available figures (April 2018) showed a further 135,000 waiting for MRIs, ultrasounds and CT scans.

    There are also significant waiting lists for community care. There are 37,229 people waiting for either speech and language therapy or assessment in June 2018.

    A further 31,361 were waiting for an occupational therapy assessment in the same month. The HSE however was unable to provide figures for the number of people waiting for actual occupational therapy treatment.  If that data was provided it is likely, according to deputy Calleary, that the numbers on waiting lists would surpass the one million threshold.

    “The scale of these waiting lists is truly shocking and highlights very clearly the level of demand and the lack of capacity available to meet it.  The latest available figures reveal that over 148,000 outpatients had been waiting over one year to see a consultant.  

    “There will be no improvement in the situation unless there is investment in capacity, and as our population continues to live longer, it poses more serious issues for our health service.  The ESRI has projected that demand for public hospital services could increase by up to 37 per cent for inpatient bed days by 2030. The time for grand plans, staged strategies and PR launches is over, what we need now is action”.


    Table of Waiting Lists

    Waiting List

     

    Inpatient/Day Case Active (NTPF June 2018)

    78,014

    Inpatient/Day Case GI Endoscopy (NTPF June 2018)

    18,279

    Inpatient / Day Case - TCI (NTPF June 2018)

    18,867

    GI Endoscopy - TCI by Group/Hospital  (NTPF June 2018)

    9,973

    Inpatient / Day Case Suspensions (NTPF June 2018)

    9,172

    Planned Procedures List / Planned Procedures (NTPF June 2018)

    12,567

    GI Endoscopy Planned Procedures (NTPF June 2018)

    56,979

    Planned Procedures Suspensions (NTPF June 2018)

    2,153

    Outpatient (NTPF June 2018)

    511,415

    Diagnostics (April 2018)

    135,094

    Primary Care - Psychology (May 2018)

    8,185

    Primary Care - Dietetics (May 2018)

    15,752

    Primary Care - Podiatry (May 2018)

    3,763

    Primary Care - Ophthalmology (May 2018)

    20,532

    Primary Care - Audiology (May 2018)

    15,264

    Occupational Therapy 1st Assessment (June 2018)

    31,361

    Speech and Language Therapy Initial Assessment (June 2018)

    14,974

    Speech and Language Therapy Initial Treatment (June 2018)

    7,894

    Speech and Language Therapy Further Treatment (June 2018)

    14,361

    Home Support Hours for Older People (May 2018)

    6,118

    Assessments of Need under Disability Act (June 2018)

    3,850

    CAMHS (March 2018)

    2,691

    Total

    997,258

     

  • Almost three-quarters of couples who got married in Co Mayo last year had Catholic marriage ceremonies.

    New figures from the CSO show that, nationally, nearly one-third of opposite-sex couples opted for a civil marriage in 2019.

    However in Mayo, of the 682 opposite-sex marriages last year, 504 had a Catholic ceremony while 94 had a civil marriage ceremony.

    There were 10 same-sex marriages in Mayo last year, of which 6 were civil ceremonies.

    The national figures published show the average age of grooms is the highest to date at 36.8 years while the average bride's age was 34.8.

    Those in same-sex marriages tend to be older when they tie the knot.

    Friday and Saturday continue to be the most popular days of the week for weddings, and August was the most popular month.

  • Passengers travelling by rail this weekend can expect some disruption to services,  due to track and construction works.

    The Westport and Galway services to Dublin have a number of alterations over Easter, due to the construction of an underpass on the Athlone to Mullingar greenway, and track works.

    From God Friday until Easter Monday, passengers on the Westport to Dublin train services will be transferred by bus between Roscommon and Tullamore, while there will be bus transfers between Ballinasloe and Tullamore for passengers on the Galway services.

    Passengers are advised to check times on the Irish Rail website before travelling this weekend.

  • Plans are being finalised in Foxford for the funeral on Friday of Ambassador Laura Bernal, the Argentine Ambassador to Ireland.

    Since taking up the position in March 2016, Ambassador Bernal, who passed away in Dublin two weeks ago, had visited Foxford a number of times to pay homage to the hometown of Admiral William Brown, founder of the Argentine Navy.

    She built a close relationship with Mayo County Council and the Admiral Brown Society in Foxford, and in keeping with the wishes of her family, she will be laid to rest in Foxford on Friday.

    Her Funeral Mass will take place in St Michael's Church, Foxford at 12 noon on Friday, with burial afterwards in Craggagh Cemetery, Foxford.

    Due to Covid-19 restrictions, attendance at the funeral will be strictly limited, but the service will be live streamed by Mayo County Council on their website Mayo.ie

     Oliver Murphy of the Admiral Brown Society in Foxford is urging people to view the funeral service online, rather than lining the streets of the town on Friday, due to Covid-19 restrictions....

  • A Galway GP claims that an ambulance had to travel 131 km from north Mayo to attend a heart attack case in south Connemara last week.

    Dr Peter Sloane, who has a general practise in Carraroe, said it was an “utter disgrace” that there was no closer ambulance available.

    According to the Irish Times, the case last Friday involved a patient with a heart attack, and the ambulance sent from Ballina took 90 minutes to arrive in Carraroe, via Maam Cross.

    Dr Sloane needed to see an elderly patient who was very unwell, but could not leave the patient with the heart attack until the ambulance arrived.

    Carraroe has an ambulance base, and Galway city provides back-up cover, but  Dr Sloane said he understood there were insufficient ambulance crews available.

    Pressure on University Hospital Galway’s emergency department can also delay crews taking in patients.

    Dr Sloane said the round-trip by the ambulance to and from north Mayo was equivalent to an ambulance in Athlone being sent to an area of Dublin and back.

    He's highlighted the urgent need to provide more ambulances and more emergency medical technicians.

    The HSE says the call was triaged, using the internationally-recognised advanced medical priority dispatch system, and the closest emergency ambulance was immediately dispatched to the scene.

     

  • 500 ambulance personnel around the country are half way through a ten-hour strike this lunchtime.

    Members of the Psychiatric Nurses Association walked off the job this morning in a row with the HSE over union recognition.

    The dispute centres on the HSE's refusal to recognise the PNA's ambulance personnel branch NASRA.

    The HSE says engaging with yet another union will impair good industrial relations within the National Ambulance Service, while PNA members in the ambulance service are pursuing their right to be represented by the union of their choice.

    Back-up plans are in place to deal with emergencies during today's strike and army personnel are on standby.

    A number of PNA members are on strike today outside the Sacred Heart Hospital in Castlebar.

  • An Bord Plenala has given the go-ahead for a €100 million development at Galway Docks.

    Local developer Gerry Barrett can proceed with plans for a substantial office development, which will include four top-end office blocks as well as retail space and accomodation for 350 students on Queen Street, overlooking Galway Docks.

    Work on the development is expected to begin next February, and will create about 400 construction jobs.

    It's expected the office development will be of interest to foreign firms moving to Ireland because of its proximity to the shopping and entertainment areas of Galway city, as well as the availability of houses and apartments.

     

     

     

     

  • An Post is denying they need to cut two thousand jobs to survive.

    The Irish Times is reporting today that  the company needs  500 job losses a year over four years.

    The paper says the numbers were outlined in a confidential briefing to Cabinet just days before An Post announced a 50 million euro investment in their network.

    This morning An Post confirmed the number of 2000 redundancies is from a strategic review in March 2017.

    The statement from the company says the company has achieved a major turnaround since then and is performing well ahead of plan and does not anticipate job reductions of this magnitude.

  • It's expected an announcement will be made today on the future of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.

    The unit accommodates mostly elderly patients with Alzheimers and dementia, and there have been fears for some time that the HSE may close the facility, as there have been no new admissions since September 2016.

    A senior HSE official said last year that the Rosalie unit would close and alternative care would be provided for the patients, but a strong campaign has been underway in Castlerea to keep the unit open, for the current residents and to provide care into the future.

    Independent assessments have been carried out recently on the residents, and Midwest News understands that senior management are visiting the unit this morning to announce its future.