LOCAL AUTHORITIES MUST COLLABORATE BETTER WITH RURAL COMMUNITIES TO DEAL WITH THE WEATHER CRISIS

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LOCAL AUTHORITIES MUST COLLABORATE BETTER WITH RURAL COMMUNITIES TO DEAL WITH THE WEATHER CRISIS
02 Dec 2010

LOCAL AUTHORITIES MUST COLLABORATE BETTER WITH RURAL COMMUNITIES TO DEAL WITH THE WEATHER CRISIS

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IFA President John Bryan said there is a pressing need for a more co-ordinated and pro-active  approach by local authorities in securing the assistance of local farmers and community members to treat secondary roads, which have been seriously impacted by the weather.

He said the effects of the prolonged cold spell demand a radical re-think on how a collaborative approach by the local authorities, farmers and the local community could deal more effectively with the adverse weather.

Mr Bryan said, “Some local authorities are proactive in providing grit to farmers who are willing to treat local roads where the conditions are deteriorating by the day. Unfortunately we have a situation in Cork where the County Council is unwilling to make the same arrangements. It is time for a uniform policy across the country which taps into the goodwill of farmers and allows people living on minor roads to get about their business.”

The IFA President said he had calls from farmers in different parts of the country who would
happily make their machinery and time available if the grit were supplied.

“Dairy farmers have tanks full of milk, feed needs to be delivered and neighbours want to get out and about. Farmers are getting worried about the capacity of their milk tanks and getting fodder to livestock. Householders living in these areas are nervous about travelling because of the condition of the roads. Local authorities need to use the goodwill of everyone in to assist with the current weather difficulties and respond to our suggestion and get the grit supplies out.”

Mr Bryan said “I once again encourage farm families to keep in touch with their neighbours and be particularly watchful of those who are elderly or are isolated during this current cold spell.”

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