Thursday, 27 January 2011

Port firm turns deaf ear to residents

THE DUBLIN Port Company has told residents of Pigeon House Road that they should go to court if they want to put an end to sleep deprivation from the night-time operation of a container terminal near their homes.

The terminal, operated by Marine Terminals Ltd (MTL), bills itself as “Ireland’s largest and most modern container terminal” and was recently refitted with at a cost of €25 million. It has three gantry cranes capable of handling Panamax container vessels.

The gantries operate day and night, generating noise in the neighbourhood “significantly above the guideline values for community noise to avoid sleep disturbance . . . as recommended by the World Health Organisation”, according to noise consultants Fehily Timoney.

“We are at our wits end,” said Alexander Downes, a spokesman for 25 local residents, who range in age from six weeks to 86 years. “We have tried for years to work with Dublin Port to bring about a resolution to this matter, without success.”

Julie McCann (86), who had been living at Coastguard Station since 1943, moved out two years ago. “I could not stand the noise from the docks,” she said. “It seems to get worse at night. No sleep – my nerves were in bits listening to the crash of containers.”

Last May a report compiled by Byrne Environmental, for the residents, concluded that noise monitoring results “demonstrated that MTL site activities have a very significant detrimental impact . . . and that there is unambiguous evidence that noise complaints are justified”.

Irish Times

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