Skellig deaths - Safety move welcomed

TWO tourists have died on Skellig Michael in the last five months.

The latest casualty, Christine Danielson Spooner, from New York, tripped and fell to her death.

Skellig Michael is a Unesco World Heritage Site and about 600 stone steps, which do not have safety rails, lead to the summit where there are monastic remains dating from the 7th century. It is a rugged and beautiful place and it is probably impossible to make it completely safe for visitors without destroying the very character that makes it such an attraction.

Martin Mansergh, the responsible minister, has announced a fundamental review of safety and ruled that access will be allowed only when it was officially open and when official guides were on duty.

If this makes Skellig a safer place for visitors then these moves are to be welcomed.


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