The weight restriction by-law for Sean O’Carroll Street – that has been passed at municipal and county council level for 10 months – still isn’t being imposed.
And at last Thursday’s Ardee Municipal District monthly meeting, Louth County Council’s senior executive engineer Sean O’Reilly told the assembled councillors that when it is finally put into effect, they can expect new problems.
Brought up by cathaoirleach Dolores Minogue, the question was asked whether the proposed weigh restriction had actually been pased at first Ardee Municipal District level and then full Louth County Council level – given how little progress there had been on it in the intervening ten months.
Indepenent councillor Jim Tenanty confirmed that the issue had to go to Joint Policing Committee however that group has met several times since the local authority passed the motion to introduce the weight restriction by-law.
That committee meets every three months and it includes polticians, local Gardai and representatives from local bodies. The matter needs to be discussed by that body as, with no traffic wardens in Ardee, it will ultimately come down to Gardai to police any restriction put in place.
Several representations have been made to the local authority regarding the matter over recent months and years. At Thursday’s meeting, O’Reilly confirmed that the Infrastructure section of Louth County Council had not received word that weight restriction signage had to be erected on the street.
He also warned councillors that when the the by-law is being imposed it will bring with it new problems.
“The last time I was talking to somebody, they told me there was an issue with HGVs turning into Ashwalk from the Main Street. It was difficult,” he said. “If it’s passed, it’s passed – but there’s going to be an issue then.”
O’Reilly was alluding to large delivery vehicles and HGVS having to turn from the main street into the Ashwalk to deliver to Lanney’s SuperValu. At the moment, larger commercial vehicles use Sean O’Carroll Street to come in from the Link Road and they can drive straight onto the Ashwalk.
However, the issue of large vehicles using the narrow street to go from link road to town centre has been a problem for many residents on the road.
Users of the St John of God services live on the street and an incident last year when an ambulance got stuck on the road as heavy vehicles tried to make their way through left locals angered that the route is being used as a main way into and out of the town. Other residents fear for the safety of their young children as large vehicles use the street regularly.