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Security alerts and M2 roadworks cause widespread woe in Northern Ireland

By Joanne Sweeney

Published 19/10/2015

PACEMAKER BELFAST 18/10/2015
A security alert on the Belfast to Dublin railway, which disrupted train services on Sunday morning, has ended.
The alert began when police received a report that a device has been left on the track in Lurgan, County Armagh.
Trains were stopped for about two hours while searches were carried out.
A police spokesman said:
PACEMAKER BELFAST 18/10/2015 A security alert on the Belfast to Dublin railway, which disrupted train services on Sunday morning, has ended. The alert began when police received a report that a device has been left on the track in Lurgan, County Armagh. Trains were stopped for about two hours while searches were carried out. A police spokesman said: "Nothing was found following a check of the line." The track has now reopened. A security alert on the Belfast to Dublin railway line following a report that a device had been left on the track in Lurgan County Armagh. Picture Matt Bohill Pacemaker.

Commuters and motorists have endured a weekend of travel disruption after a double whammy of security alerts and roadworks.

Yesterday, motorists on the M2 heading into Belfast faced delays of up to 30 minutes after two lanes were closed in the afternoon to allow repair work to be carried out on a bridge.

The main snarl up was from Sandyknowes roundabout to Arthur bridge - which effectively closed off Glengormley to travellers throughout the afternoon.

Motorists and passengers stuck in the traffic took to Twitter to tweet their frustration.

Michelle Wilson wrote: "M2 from Sandyknowes slip road to Greencastle down to 1 lane due to roadworks... literally was at a standstill and there wasn't much work going on."

A Department of Regional Development spokeswoman said that city-bound lanes two and three were reopened at 6pm.

Also in Co Antrim yesterday, the M2 at Ballymena was closed in both directions after the body of a man was found at the Larne Road roundabout at 7.20am.

The PSNI said that a post-mortem would be carried out to determine the cause of death but it was not being treated as suspicious.

Train services in Co Armagh were also hit yesterday when a suspicious object was spotted on the railway line at Lurgan in the morning.

The line was closed for two hours during a search but nothing sinister was found.

And Omagh was hit by disruption for a second time in just over a week when a massive security alert on Saturday impacted on its retail centre.

The PSNI carried out a controlled explosion on an suspicious object which turned out not to be dangerous.

The object was discovered close to the council-run Strule Arts Centre in the centre of the Tyrone town.

The whole town centre was cordoned off with roads shut and businesses evacuated.

Pharmacist Kevin Kelly, who closed his chemist shop in the town, had said he was worried that his customers were unable to access their medication.

"Many people will remember and will have been in town on the day of the Omagh bomb," Mr Kelly said.

He added that the knock-on effect will be "huge" for businesses in the town, adding that the incident will have a negative impact on trade there in the run-up to Christmas.

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