herald

Sunday 19 August 2018

River tragedy parents hit out

A DUBLIN couple whose son died after a river bank collapsed in Ringsend has slammed Dublin City Council over the latest landslip.

Parents Bridget and Derek Murphy lost their three-year-old son, Robert Emmet, in 1973 after a section of footpath along the river Dodder fell away.

Mr Murphy blamed the "negligence" of Dublin Corporation at the time for the tragedy.

And he has again criticised the council following Sunday's incident in which 40 metres of wall at Ringsend Bridge on Fitzwilliam Quay collapsed.

"Sunday was one bad, bad day for me," Mr Murphy (68) told the Herald, adding he has been campaigning for two years to prevent the scenario.

He said he first noticed problems with the wall and footpath two years ago and petitioned local politicians.

Mr Murphy, who worked in construction, was upset when he saw what happened on Sunday as it reminded him of when his son died.

Little Robert drowned after falling into the river and his body was only recovered five weeks later.

Following contact with Mr Murphy last year, Dublin South East TD John Gormley wrote to the city council.

Mr Gormley stated in a letter written in November that the condition of Ringsend bridge amounted to a "serious health and safety risk".

In reply, the council told the deputy it was aware of "movement" in the wall and admitted it was "unstable" and would have to be replaced. The council said the dangerous section has been railed off.

comurphy@herald.ie

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