Top level Irish Garda officers will begin from tomorrow a two-day crime summit in the Garda College, Templemore, Co Tipperary.
Their aim is to discuss nationwide operations against organised gang crime, while also maintaining public policing in the face of continuing Government cuts. It is expected that the targeting of drug gangs, travelling burglary gangs and gun crime will be amongst the more pressing issues to be discussed.
The conference, gets under-way as news emerges that a dedicated operation to reduce burglaries and catch the most prolific criminals has seen some 4,000 criminal cases reach the courts. In the latest data obtained from ‘Operation Fiacla,’ some 6,972 arrests have taken place, since its inception back in the spring of last year to the end of last month, accounting for some 3,971 criminal charges.
While many day to day break-ins are simply opportunistic burglary, intelligence gathered shows clearly that other crimes are committed on a full commercial scale, often by gangs using fast cars while seeking to offset the effect of detection and seizure of drugs and drug mony. Because gangs have a national reach, it is crucial for officers from across the State to meet regularly to discuss current operations and share intelligence.
New structures for community policing will also be a major part of discussions over Wednesday and Thursday in Templemore.
“Fairytale of New York.”
“They’ve got cars, big as bars,
They’ve got rivers of gold,
But the wind goes right through you,
It’s no place for the old.”
(Lyrics written by Jem Finer and Shane MacGowan.)
Is North Tipperary native and ‘Fairytale of New York’ singer Shane MacGowan about to make a Christmas appearance on the much loved ‘soap,’ Coronation Street? Well according to his website last month he may well be.
A native of Puckhaun, in north Co Tipperary, Shane himself was born on Christmas Day in Kent, while his parents were over there visiting relatives. Shane obtained his massive talents from both parents; his mother being a great singer and traditional Irish dancer, while his father had a great interest in literature and writing.
Shane’s partner the very lovely Victoria Mary Clarke is understood to have posted pictures of the ‘Pogues,’ singer, enjoying a drink in the Rovers Return with actor Chris Gascoyne who plays Peter Barlow. Sources have confirmed the episode will air on December 20th. Photographs show the Rovers Return clearly adorned with Christmas decorations and it was thought that the 55-year-old musician was set to star in a once off episode this coming festive season, perhaps singing his seasonal classic Fairytale of New York.
However, a spokesperson for Coronation Street has stated that “He was here doing some filming but for a little surprise VT that is not part of the main show.” It now maybe the case that, rather than appearing as a new drop-in character in the long running TV series, the Irish songwriter will instead sing alongside cast members in a charity performance that will form a centrepiece of the ‘Text Santa,’ charity appeal television gala, latter presented by Ant and Dec, Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby with Christine Bleakley and Paddy McGuinness. Text Santa raises funds for Age UK, Barnardo’s, BeatBullying, British Heart Foundation, CLIC Sargeant and Help the Hospices.
However it is not the first time Coronation Street has been visited by greats in the world of ‘Rock.’ Viewers will remember Les Battersby, played by Bruce Jones, persuaded ‘Status Quo’ to do a turn in the Rovers after their tour bus supposedly had broken down.
Regardless of what transpires, North Tipperary fans of ‘The Pogues,’ will be pleased to hear and view Shane, whose iconic song, above, is still a Christmas classic, some 26 years later and look forward to the Pogues nine-disc greatest hits collection, “Pogues 30,” due out possibly on December 2nd.
Cash Automated Teller Machine (ATM) users are being warned once again about a new skimming device being used by a gang of organised criminals.
Reports indicate that the gang, to date over the past two months, has targeted cash machines in Donegal, Galway, Limerick, Dublin and Cork, while Co Tipperary is not as yet known to have been targeted.
However Tipperary and Thurles students and employees residing in Dublin have been targeted by these skimming devices while attempting to access their accounts.
In the case of one Thurles individual her account was skimmed in Dublin and within one hour was used to attempt the purchase of three iPods in New York City. Happily the transaction was quickly identified by her Thurles Ulster Bank branch, who immediately contacted her, thus halting the criminal transaction. Apparently unlike Ireland, card users in New York are not asked for PIN numbers when using cards to transact cash, thus making it easy for these organised criminal gangs to operate.
It is understood that these hi-tech card readers have also been wired to some in-store ATMs, so do beware, and be again reminded to always cover your PIN number when using any Automated Teller Machine.
In total some 434 homes were identified with high levels of the cancer-causing gas Radon, over the past 1.5 years. These new figures have been released by the Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII).
Radon is a radioactive, colourless, odourless, tasteless gas, occurring naturally as an indirect decay product of Uranium or Thorium and is regarded as the second biggest cause of lung cancer and directly linked to more than 200 lung cancer deaths here in Ireland each year.
Radon gas enters a home through the lowest level in a house, which comes in contact with open ground. A typical entry point for radon into homes are; cracks in solid foundations, construction joints, cracks in walls, gaps in suspended floors, gaps around service pipes, cavities inside walls, and through entry areas accessing your water supply. The concentration in one room of a building may be therefore significantly different than the concentration in an adjoining room.
Over 39 homes tested in Ireland had radon levels of between 4 and 10 times the acceptable level and these were located in Galway (15), Wexford (6), Kerry (4), Sligo (4), Cork (2), Wicklow (2), Clare (1), Limerick (1), Louth (1), Mayo (1), Tipperary (1) and Waterford (1).
Some 384 other homes had radon levels up to 4 times the acceptable level and were found, as predicted, in known ‘High Radon Areas,’ throughout the Irish Republic.
Measuring for radon and fixing the problem are regarded as easy to correct. To test for radon, one radon detector is placed in a bedroom and a second in a living room for a three-month period with the detectors then sent by post for analysis. The RPII and a number of private companies provide a radon measurement service at a cost of around €50 depending on which measurement company is chosen. In a worst case scenario remedial work can cost around €850 with annual running costs of approximately €100, however simply improving indoor ventilation may solve the problem.
To view Thurles, which is not regarded as a ‘High Radon Area,’ go to the interactive map made available on the RPII’s website at www.rpii.ie.
Further information can also be obtained by phoning Freefone 1800 300 600.
Thurles Blood Donation Clinic
WHERE: The Dome, Semple Stadium, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.
WHEN: Thursday 14th November, 2013.
TIME: 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Help Save a Life………GIVE BLOOD
Did You Know ? One car accident victim may require up to 30 units of blood, a bleeding ulcer could require anything between 3-30 units of blood and a coronary artery bypass may use between 1-5 units of blood.
Approximately 70,000 patients will have transfusions in Irish hospitals this year
3,000 blood donors are needed each week in Ireland
For further details check their website www. giveblood.ie or contact them on Tel: 061 306980