‘Christmas Day syndrome’, big fuel demand and a damp-squib snowball fight

Just one person turned up to the ‘massive snowball fight’ planned for Wednesday

Gardaí expect crime to significantly decrease during the snowy and cold weather forecast over the coming days. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Gardaí expect crime to significantly decrease during the snowy and cold weather forecast over the coming days. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

 

Gardaí expect crime to significantly decrease during the snowy and cold weather forecast over the coming days.

Sources said it would not be until after the cold front passes and crime figures are analysed that the extent of the decrease would become clear.

“But with weather like this we can have what you might refer to as cases of ‘Christmas Day syndrome’,” said one source. “You can have family members in the same house who don’t get on and don’t normally spend time with each other trapped in each other’s company for a long time.

“And sometimes when you add alcohol into the mix it can lead to very serious domestic disputes.”

Other sources said for-profit crime, such as targeted break-ins, and also more random street crime decreases in all forms of bad weather.

“Even if you’re patrolling in really wet weather there are far, far fewer people on the streets,” said one Garda source.

“In a large town or city that means things like public order crime plummets. And that will be especially so in the snow.

“And in terms of crimes like burglaries, armed robberies, cars being stolen; all of those crimes are harder to commit and getaway from in this weather. So generally these guys don’t bother.”

Senior officers said the locations of drink-driving checkpoints, and whether they should take place at all, would be heavily influenced by the road conditions.

“There’s no way you want to do these in areas where it would put your own people [gardaí] in danger and also put drivers at risk,” said one officer.

Hunger for fuel

Fuel suppliers continue to report a big increase in customers with Brian Keane of Arigna Fuels in Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Roscommon, saying business was “100 per cent up” on its usual volume in recent days.

The company manufactures smokeless fuels for open fires and for solid fuel stoves and supplies wholesalers and businesses, including filling stations and Bord na Móna.

“I’m in this 24 years and I’ve never seen anything like it,” he added.

Niall McGuinness, of CPL Fuels Ireland, said fuel demand was “quite unbelievable”, with merchants all over Ireland reporting to be sold out. The issue in keeping up with demand if this continues will be twofold.

“How do we meet demand? To do this we will be looking to work 24 hours per day and into the weekend. Just today I advised operations that they are to hire 4x4 [vehicles] if that’s what is required to get production staff on sites.”

Lone ranger

Just one person turned up to the “massive snowball fight” that was due to take place on Wednesday afternoon.

A northside teenage boy was the only person to turn up to the snowball fight organised for 3pm on O’Connell Bridge in Dublin’s city centre.

The event, dubbed as a “vicious snowball fight to the death”, had been organised on Facebook with about 4,000 claiming they were set to attend and a further 12,000 “interested”.