By Anne Lucey
The Conor Pass, ( An Chonair), the high mountain pass between Tralee and Dingle has been closed because of falling icicles.
The 460m high narrow pass between Tralee and Dingle on the R5660 road is dangerous at the best of times. It had frozen over during Storm Emma but re-opened after the recent bad weather. However Kerry County Council closed it again on Wednesday morning.
Motorists including council staff this morning were faced with icicles falling off the cliff face and down onto the road.
There had been no accidents but the pass was likely to remain closed until Thursday, the council spokesman said.
Meanwhile, heating has still not been restored to Kerry’s main courthouse in Tralee in the wake of the weather event of the first weekend in March. A leak in the main heating has proved difficult to detect.
The District Court sat in subzero temperatures on Wednesday again with court registrars provided with emergency plug in heaters in the high ceiling room.
The 19th century stone building in Ashe Street has not been upgraded in recent times and the court service has acknowledged it is no longer fit for purpose in the modern era.
It has no wheelchair access, no press, wifi or family law consultation room facilities. Courts offices have had to move out to rent a nearby premises because of health and safety concerns.
Various options for the provision of improved Court facilities in Tralee are under consideration by the Courts Service including a former army barrack on a large site on the outskirts of Tralee. However the move there is being resisted by businesses and the local law society.
Meanwhile, there will be renewed attempts to fix the heating this weekend, which has been largely out of order due to a major problem with a suspected leak since the first weekend in March, courts service has said.
Difficulties have arisen with detecting the exact source of the leak. The heating in the second room, the Circuit Court, returned for a brief period last week. But prison holding cells and all other rooms remain cold.