Fears that spikes in sand dunes could impale kids

January 31st, 2023 1:30 PM

By Jackie Keogh

Steel spikes sticking up from the dunes at Garrylucase Beach could impale an adult or a child, according to Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG).

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SEMI-eroded spikes in the dunes at Garrylucas Beach could impale members of the public, a meeting has heard.

Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) made the claim at a meeting of the Western Division of Cork County Council on Monday.

Old coastal management ‘groynes’ made of railway sleepers have become eroded, he said.

Now, all that remains in some places are the spikes of metal that had been used to keep them in place. The groynes were effective while they lasted, said Cllr Murphy, but now the beach has been ‘all but destroyed’.

Last weekend, he said, the wind left the roadway strewn with sand. But what is more worrying is that the groynes are almost gone.

‘In their place, there are steel spikes sticking up from the old railway sleepers,’ said Cllr Murphy, who warned that the situation had become a safety issue.

Senior council executive MacDara O h-Icí informed the Council members that a report on the ecology of Garrylucas had been commissioned, as well as an additional report on beach access.

He said both reports are currently in draft form but will be presented to the Bandon/Kinsale Municipal District shortly.

The councillors were informed that ‘things have moved on’ since railway sleepers were used to protect sand dunes and that level of interference with the ecology of the area may no longer be acceptable.

Cllr Murphy produced photographs on his phone that showed three spikes sticking up out of the dunes.

As a safety measure, he called for the dunes to be fenced off because he said it is ‘an accident waiting to happen – children, anyone, could be injured walking in that area.’

The question of who would be responsible, legally, in the event of a child or person getting injured was not answered directly. The county manager said liability would be a legal matter that the local authority would deal with it, in the event of an accident.

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