by Caroline Spencer
Fines were issued but no arrests made in Salthill over the weekend, despite the sharp uptick in visitors.
Footage of crowded Galway beaches circulated across social media over the weekend. The footage sparked controversy across media channels.
Fine Gael Councillor Jimmy McClearn condemned the scenes.
“There’s no excuse for this, what we witnessed on social media cannot be condoned. People should be more imaginative in how they socialise outdoors without endangering others,” he said.
Councillor McClearn also took issue with those breaking restrictions due to frustration over the lockdown.
“It’s always someone else’s fault, people act as if the government is the cause of this virus. The most important thing is the vaccine rollout.” he said.
An Garda Síochána were contacted in regards to the crowded scenes at Salthill.
“An Garda Síochána continues to encourage the public to plan your activities and take personal responsibility by adhering to the public health guidelines by maintain social distance, washing your hands regularly, wearing a face covering, reducing your contacts and avoiding areas where there are large gatherings of people.”
“Where Gardaí find potential breaches of the public health regulations a file is prepared for the DPP in each case or a Fixed Payment Notice is issued where appropriate.”
With the Bank Holiday weekend approaching, public officials are calling for the need to take caution.
Sinn Fein TD Mairéad Farrell stressed the need for care.
“We need to listen public safety…young people have had it hard with the lack of socialising, but we still need to take the advice of medical professionals to ensure public safety,” she said.