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Council victory in apartments 'fire risks' row

DUBLIN City Council has won permission to bring proceedings against a construction company over alleged breaches of orders that prevent it using an apartment complex's underground car park until fire safety improvements are made.

Yesterday, at the High Court, lawyers for the City Council informed Ms Justice Mary Laffoy that the terms of the injunction against the complex's owners, and main contractors, McGinley Construction Ltd, the Hollands, Lifford, Co Donegal, and a director of the firm, Hugh McGinley, the Haw, Lifford, Co Donegal, were not being complied with.

Earlier this month the council obtained an injunction, pending the full hearing of the action, prohibiting the use of the car park at the complex that consists of 73 apartments in blocks of four and five floors as well as unoccupied retail units and a creche at 55-58 East Road, Dublin 3.

Mr Justice Bryan McMahon, who had no hesitation in granting the injunction, also ruled that the order was to remain until specific measures had taken place.

These include the carrying out of works to ensure compliance with fire safety notices and that certificates of compliance from a registered engineer or architect are furnished to the Fire Authority.

The injunction was granted after a fire prevention officer with Dublin Fire Brigade expressed his fears that in the event of a fire in the basement there was "a serious and immediate risk to the lives" of the dozens of occupants in the apartments, unless the work was complied with.

Rubbish

Yesterday James Connolly, appearing with Karen Denning, for the council, said that the injunction was originally sought by his clients to prevent the use of the basement for car parking and storing rubbish due to safety concerns. However Mr Connolly said those concerns were "being ignored" and the terms of the injunction were not being complied with. Ms Justice Laffoy made the matter returnable before the High Court next week.

hnews@herald.ie