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'Speed ramps needed where my Kimberly died in smash' - mum


Kimberly O’Connor died in a car crash last February

Kimberly O’Connor died in a car crash last February

Kimberly O’Connor died in a car crash last February

A woman who lost her daughter in a horrific crash involving a car driven by a teenage boy has pleaded for speed ramps to be installed in a community where some roads "are being used like race tracks".

Kimberly O'Connor (16) died when the car in which she was a passenger spun out of control and smashed into a wall in Cork city last February 19.

The teenage boy who was driving ran from the scene.

Kimberly's mother Jennifer has now pleaded for speed ramps to be installed to avoid another tragedy.

The 19-year-old car involved in the collision in Knocknaheeny had been bought for just €200.

Two other teenagers who were in it were seriously injured.

Jennifer said the tragedy robbed her of her "priceless diamond" of a daughter.

She said Kimberly only agreed to accept a lift home because it was raining - and paid for it with her life.


Jennifer said she heard the smash outside her front door.

"Out of the blue, I heard a loud bang. It was like a building collapsing," she told RedFM's Neil Prendeville Show.

"It was like something falling from the sky, that's how loud it was. I ran from the bedroom and ran out.

"The car was after spinning outside and crashed.

"I was thinking Kimberly was somewhere else and I was ringing her phone and there was no answer.

"My daughter Shannon was saying, 'Mam, the person in the car has the same clothes on that Kimberly had on today', so the panic set in.

"I was praying to God that she would answer the phone and walk around the corner.

"My whole life crashed. I will never be the same again. I'm only existing, I'm not living. I would love to be with her, but I have a little baby.

"It's a worry when you have teenagers. Before Kimberly died, I was always ringing her and saying, 'Where are you, what are you doing?' It was such a shock."

Jennifer paid tribute to the local community for the support she has received.

"I have to live because I have other children. I have to try my best. What's giving me a little bit of hope is that she's with her dad, who died when she was four."

Jennifer has asked for traffic-calming measures to be introduced in Knocknaheeny.

"Kimberly made a bad choice that night," she said. "It ended up taking her life right outside my door. She was my everything."

A large crowd attended Kimberly's requiem mass at St Mary's On The Hill Church in Knocknaheeny in February.

She was a transition year student at Terence MacSwiney Community College.

Kimberly is survived by Jennifer, sisters Shannon and Britney, brother Cody and Jennifer's partner Ken.