Councillor John “Rocky” McGrath has slammed Coillte for failing to accept any responsibility for damage caused to roads in rural roads by their trucks. Speaking at the Newport Area meeting on Monday, November 11th, Councillor McGrath called on Coillte to engage with the Council and assist in working for the betterment of roads in his area.
Councillor McGrath stated;
“I have been working on this issue and have been trying to engage with Coillte over the last year. A number of roads in rural areas such as Foilduff, Toor, Killoscully and the general Rearcross area have been devastated and destroyed by the constant presence of very heavy Coillte trucks travelling up and down to the forestry’s.”
“To date Coillte have refused to accept responsibility and have shrugged off any blame. Over a year ago they gave an assurance that no overly heavy loads of timber were leaving the area.”
“At the area meeting it was suggested that Coillte have an entitlement to use these roads and that milk trucks cause just as much damage. I strong reject this assertion and believe it is an unfair and untrue comment. The milk trucks serving the area are rigid trucks, are empty when they start in the morning and only serve the 7-8 dairy farms in the area. This is far removed from the massively heavy loads, upwards of 30 tonnes, being transported by Coillte by very big, powerful trucks. The roads in these areas are simply not able to cope with this constant volume of massive loads. Furthermore farmers pay a massive amount of taxes and road tax whereas Coillte are making no contribution to roads works in the area.”
“Coillte’s refusal to accept any responsibility is simply not good enough. Those living in these frequently remote areas, are left with roads in an appalling condition. Many are almost impassable, especially during the bad winter weather. The Council are being left carrying the can and they simply do not have the funds to repair the enormous damage done. It is grossly unfair on the residents and I would urge Coillte to accept responsibility for their actions.”