'People feel locked in their homes': North Cork towns’ residents concerned over dangerous roads

One councillor said: “I never saw roads in such a condition. The people in those areas are really suffering."
'People feel locked in their homes': North Cork towns’ residents concerned over dangerous roads

A section of the N73 National Road from Mallow to Mitchelstown (near Kildorrery). Fine Gael councillor Kay Dawson said that while they welcome improvements on the N73 road, drivers are still “looking for the shortest routes from A to B. Pic: Larry Cummins

RESIDENTS near Shanballymore and Kildorrery are “living in fear” with the amount of heavy traffic speeding on country roads in their areas, says a county councillor.

Fianna Fáil councillor Frank O’Flynn requested that Cork County Council call on the Minister for Transport to undertake a review of the present road closure notices rules to make the law in relation to those notices “more effective and legal in controlling traffic during construction and works and to safeguarding the public and road users in the interest of safety and to protect the existing road network, as the existing road closure system is not fit for purpose”.

Mr O’Flynn said he is inundated with phonecalls and emails about roads near Shanballymore, Kildorrery, and Doneraile that are being “absolutely destroyed”.

Some drivers coming from the Charleville side, and at Oliver’s Cross, are not obeying road signs, and people are saying their entrances are “being destroyed”. 

Mr O’Flynn said they should write to the minister and put in place a system of road closures which are “effective and fit for purpose”.

“There are 100 kilometres of roads that are destroyed,” he said. “I never saw roads in such a condition. The people in those areas are really suffering. They are living in fear, with the speed. People are saying to me, they feel locked in their homes.”

Fine Gael councillor Kay Dawson said that while they welcome improvements on the N73 road, drivers are still “looking for the shortest routes from A to B, and are cutting across roads that are barely fit for purpose, for just the residents to use on a regular basis. If you meet one of those trucks on those roads, there is no place for you to go.”

“You’re taking your life in your hands. It’s dangerous. The surface is so badly damaged, and you’re the whole time on the edge of the road. I fear for the outcome of it.”

Independent councillor Frank Roche said it’s “frightening” with the amount of traffic on minor roads.

“It’s lethal. The hedges should have been cut so you can keep in a bit.”

Chief executive Tim Lucey said the 4km road in question has to be closed for six months.

“There are diversion routes in place, and that diversion route clearly requires traffic to go on to more minor roads.”

The council has no authority to prevent HGVs going onto minor roads. The road undergoing works is a Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) project, but the minor roads being impacted are the council’s, said Mr Lucey.

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