Deadly junctions ‘unlikely’ to get funds for roundabouts

Funding is unlikely to be provided for roundabouts at three dangerous junctions, where numerous accidents have occurred, on the N22 road between Cork and Tralee, it emerged yesterday.

Deadly junctions ‘unlikely’ to get funds for roundabouts

There have been fatal accidents at one of the junctions and several non-fatal crashes have been reported at all three, which are in the Killarney area.

Kerry County Council engineer David Doyle told yesterday’s meeting of Killarney Municipal District that the National Roads Authority (NRA) was unlikely to give funding for roundabouts and an outer bypass of Killarney would provide the real solution.

However, the long-awaited, 26km bypass — planned to take a cross-country route from Killarney to Farranfore — has been shelved due to lack of funding.

Fine Gael Cllr John Sheahan proposed a roundabout at Aghadoe junction, about 1km outside Killarney, saying there had been a serious accident there recently. He also called for an extension of a 50km/h speed limit to the area. “People trying to get onto the Tralee/Killarney road are being given very little time to cross the road because of traffic coming at speed from the Tralee side,’’ he said.

“People get frustrated waiting for a chance to cross and accidents happen as they come onto the road.’’ He was supported by Independent Cllr Brendan Cronin who said people emerging onto the road from the Aghadoe side were playing Russian roulette and putting life and limb at risk.

But engineers said a roundabout at this location had a priority-three categorisation and, as the minor road was a local road, it was highly unlikely to be identified for improvement by the NRA.

Cllr Cronin also claimed a second junction on the N22, close to Fitzgerald Stadium and the scene of many accidents, was also being “ignored’’ by the NRA.

The third junction highlighted was that at Coolcaslough, on the Cork side of the town, where a serious accident occurred in May. Cllr Sheahan asked if someone would first have to be killed there before a roundabout is provided.

Kerry County Council has already brought this junction to the NRA’s attention, based on recorded accidents, and regards necessary improvements as a safety project.

The meeting was told by engineers, however, that improvements would probably include traffic-calming measures as the NRA would be unlikely to fund a roundabout.

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