Wednesday, February 28, 2024

VIDEO: Mullingar explosion shakes housing estate

“This was just ridiculous, and all those involved could be dead, or other innocent people killed,” Mullingar’s Chief Fire Officer Paul McLoughlin told Topic this week, when he described the recklessness of those who put an 85kg cylinder of highly volatile oxy-acetylene gas into an empty oildrum in which a fire had been lit, on the Iarnród Éireann Gantry Yard site at Clonmore, Mullingar.

Many Mullingar residents were awakened between 1 and 1.30am on Monday morning, 23 February, after a severe explosion shook houses over a wide area of the town. Few became aware of what had happened until Iarnród Eireann staff went to work at the Clonmore site at 9am. They discovered that vandals had cut through a fence into a protected area, lit a fire in an oildrum, and had, it appears, put a large 85kg oxy-acetylene cylinder of gas into the fire – a totally reckless and highly dangerous act.

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