06 Dec 2010
FARMERS AND RURAL IRELAND CO-OPERATE TO COPE WITH HARSH WEATHER CONDITIONSRural Development
IFA President John Bryan said ongoing co-operation between farmers, local communities and agencies is helping to reduce the impact of the continuing freezing weather across rural Ireland. He said, “road gritting operations are in place around the country where farmers are using their machinery to help treat secondary and minor roads. This has improved conditions for people living off the main roads.”
In the run-up to Christmas, farm families are enduring much tougher conditions than usual during what is a very busy time in meeting demand. He said, “there has been a very good response to the difficulties posed by the extreme weather of the last ten days, with neighbours looking out for each other and offering help where it is needed.”
John Bryan said, “dairy farmers are using mobile tankers to get milk delivered to bulk carriers at designated collection points on the main roads. This operation is difficult and time consuming, but farm families are coping and regular supplies are being maintained. Freezing water pipes continue to pose a problem for milking machines and getting water to livestock.”
Roads in west Cork have been treated following the decision by Cork County Council to make grit and salt available. IFA Chairman David O’Brien said there has been an improvement and people in rural communities are getting out and about.
The snowfall in the west, particularly in Donegal and Mayo in recent days, is making farming conditions and travel on rural roads extremely difficult.
John Bryan renewed his appeal to farmers to work safely during what is a very challenging time, especially as a thaw sets in and surfaces become more dangerous. “We have reports of shed roofs coming under pressure from the weight of snow. Farmers should check their buildings and ensure they are safe.”