Easing of restrictions
Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan hopes that an ambitious easing of restrictions may soon be possible.
Dr Holohan said: “We are in a strong position in that transmission levels have reduced substantially and the rollout of vaccination is protecting more and more of those at risk from the severe effects of Covid-19.
“If we can maintain our current position there is hope that we can look forward to a real easing of measures, but it is as important as ever that we don’t put that progress at risk by letting our collective guard down too much, or too early.”
Restrictions easing in the North
The reopening of scores of close-contact services in the North after a four-month lockdown has been hailed as a “good day” by the Economy Minister.
Outdoor visitor attractions, hairdressers and beauty salons are trading again, while driving lessons are resuming, along with theory and practical tests.
Competitive sport can take place outdoors with numbers not exceeding 100, but spectators will not be allowed.
People aged 64 will be able to register to receive a Covid-19 vaccine from 10am today.
The HSE have confirmed people in this age group will receive the AstraZeneca vaccine and those eligible to register can fill out their information on the HSE website, or call the helpline on 1850 24 1850 if they require assistance in completing the process, or do not have internet access.
Intel Covid outbreak
Intel has confirmed a Covid outbreak on the construction site for its new manufacturing facility in Leixlip, Co Kildare.
The chipmaker, which recently announced plans to create 1,600 new jobs as part of a multi-billion investment, said that approximately 70 cases have been confirmed to date but that the situation is “fluid”.
Pipe bombs seized in Louth
Gardaí have arrested two men and seized two pipe bombs, gun powder, and a large quantity of firearms ammunition along with a quantity of cocaine and tablets following the search of a property in Drogheda yesterday.
At 11pm on Thursday, gardaí attached to the Louth Divisional Drugs Unit based at Drogheda, carried out a search of a house in Drogheda town.
During the course of the search, gardaí located two pipe bombs, gun powder, and a large quantity of firearms ammunition.
Former Debenhams employees, who were removed from a Dublin store last night, say there was no need for the number of gardaí who turned up.
Around 30 protesters barricaded themselves into the loading bay at Debenhams on Henry Street, in an effort to stop KPMG liquidators from removing stock from the premises.
Gardaí say they attend the scene as required under a High Court Order.