Belfast Telegraph

Homeless man injured after tent removed by industrial vehicle

The man was sleeping in a tent near the Grand Canal when it was removed by an industrial vehicle during works to tidy the walkway.

The man was rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital (Niall Carson/PA)
The man was rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital (Niall Carson/PA)

By Cate McCurry, PA

A homeless man has been left seriously injured following an incident in Dublin city centre.

The man was sleeping in a tent near the Grand Canal when it was removed by an industrial vehicle during works to tidy the canal walkway.

The incident happened on Tuesday afternoon in the Wilton Terrace area.

The man was rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital where he remains in a serious condition.

An individual was injured during the process and was taken to hospital Dublin City Council

Gardai said investigations are ongoing.

In a statement, Dublin City Council said the incident happened while Waterways Ireland was removing tents that it said were “placed in a precarious and dangerous location”.

“An individual was injured during the process and was taken to hospital. The Dublin Regional Homeless Executive is currently liaising with the hospital and every support is being provided,” the statement added.

“Our thoughts are with the man at this time.

“The Executive has been engaging with the individual for some time and accommodation remains available to him.

“Every action that is taken by state services is taken in the interest of health and safety of those individuals experiencing homelessness.

“The matter is currently being investigated by the Gardai and there will be no further comment.”

The most important thing is that we wish him a speedy recovery Leo Varadkar

Leo Varadkar said he is “very concerned” about the incident.

The Fine Gael leader said: “I’m always loathed to comment on any individual case until we know all the facts and we know from experience that initial reporting can often be different from the later reporting.

“He is in a serious condition, but stable. He is well known to homeless services and has been offered emergency accommodation in the past and it will be offered to him again in the future but obviously our thoughts are with him, and we hope he makes a speedy recovery and we’ll do everything we can to make sure that is accommodated.

“My understanding is that the city council and Waterways Ireland did check the tents before moving them, but obviously something went wrong here.”

He called for the Dublin Lord Mayor and Waterways Ireland to make a statement about the matter.

“The most important thing is that we wish him a speedy recovery,” Mr Varadkar added.

“I remember when we took over the housing department about three-and-a-half years ago there were over 160 people sleeping rough on our streets in Dublin, that’s now down around 92.

“So there’s more work to be done.

“In this case this poor gentleman has been offered accommodation in the past and will of course be offered again when he’s discharged from hospital.”

Meanwhile, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy said he has “demanded” a full report into the incident.

He tweeted: “I was saddened to hear of the incident by the canal yesterday.

“My thoughts are with this poor man as he recovers in hospital.

“I’ve demanded a full report in to the incident which is under Garda investigation.

“My campaign poster which was located at the scene has been removed.”

PA

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