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Mon 24-Sep-2001 12:03
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Safety at Croke Park
We’ve commented in our latest Chronicle about the light plane with the ‘No Incineration’ banner trailing behind it over Croke Park yesterday…
Also hovering overhead were the lads and lassies of the Flight Wing of An Garda Síochána, otherwise known as the ‘Garda helicopter’. Several times, the light plane flew dangerously close to the helicopter, sometimes only a few metres away, with the banner trailing behind. An unexpected, strong gust of wind – or an unforeseen maneouvre by either craft - could easily have flicked the banner onto the helicopter’s rotor blades. The consequences of that happening – for the crew of both craft – and for thousands of spectators below are unthinkable! Many lives could be lost and many severe injuries sustained.
AFR understood that the airspace above Dublin is controlled by the Irish Aviation Authority, who do an excellent, if often unsung, job twenty-four hours round-the-clock at our airports. We thought all flights of any nature across the capital city need to file – and stick to – an agreed flight plan with the IAA following an escapade some years ago by a ‘joker’ who almost flew a micro-light into O’Connell Bridge House(where, ironically, IAA headquarters were situated at the time!) We’ve also heard from our sources that the Garda
are not exactly on the best of terms with their Air Corps controllers beyond in Baldonnel. In the wake of the atrocities in the United States one would think that a closer eye would be kept on the goings-on in the skies over Dublin.
We’re constantly reminded by 'Fógraí Speisialta' at Croker that ‘the safety authorities’ have forbidden exuberant fans from encroaching onto the pitch after a victory. However, either the IAA or those self-same ‘safety authorities’ should look at the threat to health and safety posed by the aerial acrobats overhead!
And let’s do it
before something we’ll all regret happens …
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