The promoters of last weekend’s All Together Now festival, along with gardaí and Waterford City Council, are to undertake a review of the event’s traffic management after the roads approaching the site came to a standstill for hours on Friday.
Approaches to the Curraghmore Estate were gridlocked on the festivals’ first day, with many attendees complaining that they were stuck in their cars for a number of hours in the final few kilometres leading to the event site.
Organisers acknowledged the traffic management issues in a post to social media after the conclusion of the three-day festival on Monday.
“For a lot of you, this journey started with long delays. We understand the frustration this caused and it was far from how we wanted this weekend to start together. We have to make this right, and we will,” the event’s promoters posted to its Facebook page.
The Garda Press Office said: “An Garda Siochána are reviewing the policing of the ‘All Together Now festival 2019’, and as part of that process will examine all aspects of the policing of the event, including traffic management.
“The Garda management plan for the festival involved the deployment of a large number of Gardaí drawn from the Southeast Region including the deployment of Garda Traffic Units, plainclothes units and other resources.
“As part of the planning for the event, Gardai met with the organisers and other stakeholders including the Local Authority to put in place a policing plan for the event.
“As part of a review of the of the policing plan the Garda Siochána will meet with the organizers and the local authority with a view to analysing the difficulties which arose, especially the traffic congestion and identifying what can be done in the future to mitigate the impact of large volumes of traffic on the routes to the event."
The Irish Examiner asked the Garda Press Office if the traffic management plan for the event contained any estimates as to the expected volume of traffic, the spread of this traffic across the two approaches to the festival site, and if it projected how this traffic would be spread over the course of the day.
The Garda Press Office has yet to reply to these queries.
You, the people, performers, volunteers, artists, creators, and rebels - it's you who make this festival very special....August 5, 2019
Meanwhile, Waterford City and County Council - the licensing authority for the festival - said there were “significant problems” in terms of Traffic Management at the event.
“There was a large volume of traffic attending the Festival. There were significant problems in terms of traffic management with traffic delays and tailbacks en route. The council will undertake a comprehensive review of the 2019 event in conjunction with the promoters and the gardai with a view to identifying the causes of the traffic issues, and to take action to minimise the impact of traffic on the routes to Curraghmore for future events,” a statement from the council said.
While a copy of last year’s license application and Event Management Plan can be viewed on the local authority’s website, no such documents for this year’s festival are available on the site.
The Irish Examiner has asked Waterford City and County Council for these documents, but they were not yet available.