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Doolan - Health and Safety regulations on building sites must be reviewed

2 February, 2004

Sinn Féin representative in Dublin South East, Daithi Doolan has criticised the careless attitude towards building site safety in Dublin City. He was speaking after a 200-foot crane collapsed in their neighbourhood which resulted in 60 residents from Emerald Cottages, Barrow Street and Grand Canal Street in Ringsend being housed in a nearby hotel.

After speaking with the residents Sinn Féin Representative for the area, Daithí Doolan said:

"I have spoken to some of the residents who have been temporarily re-housed. They are obviously very shaken and also angry about what has happened.

Some of these residents had raised concerns in recent weeks about their safety in relation to this building site. The danger of these cranes being used in a residential area was obvious to them.

I am calling on the Minister for the Environment to put an immediate hold on the use of these cranes in residential areas. The government should also completely review building site health and safety regulations and ensure that existing regulations are enforced.

It is far too easy for property developers to get away with breaking health and safety regulations. These developers, many of whom, make millions, seem to treat health and safety on their sites with disregard. The reality of our legal system is that if a property developer is brought to court they will most likely walk away with a fine, even if someone has died due to a breach in health and safety regulations.

Of course accidents do happen but it seems to me that far too often it is the public and workers who pay for these accidents, many of which are preventable. The whole building industry needs to be tightened up. Property developers take their profits seriously; it's time they took the safety of their workers and the public just as seriously.

Sadly a large amount of people have died on building sites over recent years and yet still we have a situation where a 200 foot crane can collapse."ENDS

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