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Much left to do in addressing Traveller accommodation fire safety concerns – Adams

21 September, 2016 - by Gerry Adams

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD, responding to the publication today of the national fire safety audit of Traveller accommodation by the National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management, has welcomed the work undertaken thus far to carry out fire safety improvements in Traveller accommodation but said “the report clearly illustrates that much work remains to be done”.

Teachta Adams said:

“Today's report, which was commissioned in the aftermath of the fire in Carrickmines last October which resulted in the tragic death of ten members of the Connors, Lynch and Gilbert families, is welcome in that it outlines a lot of work that has been done in carrying out fire safety improvements in Traveller accommodation throughout the state, as well as work ongoing in different local authority areas.

“However, the report also illustrates that a lot of work remains outstanding, particularly works relating to the distancing of units and bays, which is vital to ensure that Traveller accommodation is made safer, as well as electrical works, which have only been carried out in half of the instances identified that need attention.

“I welcome the report's recommendation in respect of Local Traveller Accommodation Consultative Committees taking on the role of ensuring that fire safety concerns are dealt with by local authorities. However, it should be noted that such committees have not functioned as well as they should as a result of some council's taking a laissez-fair attitude to Traveller issues. This is another issue that must be tackled by the Minister for Housing and Local Government Minister Simon Coveney.” 

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