Council warns of health risk at dump


A SERIOUS health risk is likely to develop if picketing of a dump at Ballyogan, Carrickmines, in south Dublin is not stopped, the High Court was told yesterday.

About 400 tonnes of refuse is normally deposited there each day, Mr Justice Kelly was told, but because of picketing trucks have not been able to get in. The judge was also told by an official of Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council that a serious health risk could arise within a very short time because of picketing.

Four residents of the area gave an undertaking yesterday not to picket between now and next Monday, when the case is due to come before the court again. Residents are protesting because of the presence of travellers on part of the dump.

Mr Fehin McDonagh, counsel for the residents, said his clients were concerned at some newspaper coverage of the protest, which described them as being, anti traveller. There were most emphatically not anti traveller. Their complaint was against the council, which had refused to take steps to compel them to move.

He said his clients had been living in truly appalling conditions for the last seven months. Children were being accosted going to and from school. Children could not be let outside for fear of getting infectious diseases. Rubbish was accumulating.

Mr Pat Butler, counsel for the local authority, said that 40 to 50 refuse freighters a day used the site. They were from South Dublin County Council and Dublin Corporation, as well as Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council.

Mr Donal O'Neill, senior ad ministrative officer with Dun Laoghaire Rathdown council, in an affidavit said the picketing of the site had led to an accumulation of uncollected rubbish in that council's functional area.

Temporary facilities were granted to it to dispose of the collected rubbish at a landfill operated by Fingal County Council at Baleally, Co Dublin. Consent to carry out further at Dunsink sanitary had been refused. The permission to use Baleally was likely to be terminated at any time.

Waste could not be maintained in the refuse freighters for any length of time as there was a danger the refuse might ignite in them.