Civil Defence units in Cork will be better equipped to deal with severe weather events thanks to the efforts of outgoing Minister with responsibility for Defence Paul Kehoe.
In one of his last acts in the job, Mr Kehoe announced that the Cork units are getting four new four-wheel drive vehicles that will enable them to better respond to certain conditions.
The allocations were part of a 32-vehicle roll-out of new Ford Ranger vehicles to Civil Defence units nationwide.
Fine Gael Senator Tim Lombard welcomed the move saying two are to be allocated to the Cork City unit and one each to the Cork South and Cork North units.
“Throughout our response to Covid-19, our Civil Defence and other volunteer agencies played a vital role in their respective communities. From transporting patients to hospitals, nursing homes and testing centres in Cork to the collection of medications and medical equipment. We are rightly proud of our Civil Defence volunteers,” Mr Lombard said.
“These new vehicles will be an additional resource for those who give their time and work so hard in times of emergency. This will further enhance the Civil Defence fleet and ensure the organisation and its volunteers can continue to support the principal response agencies of An Garda Síochána, the HSE and local authorities,” he added.
The announcement follows the Department of Defence being awarded €1 million in funding from the Dormant Accounts Fund.
Mr Kehoe said the new vehicles will be an additional resource for all types of Civil Defence operations such as severe weather events and missing person searches.
He said he was acutely aware that Civil Defence’s current fleet of vehicles including four-wheel drives, vans, minibuses and ambulances have been significantly utilised since Covid-19 hit Ireland in March.