Gardaí are investigating an incident where a firearm was ‘produced’ during a dispute between locals and a building contractor undertaking roadworks in Co Clare.
The incident occurred on Monday near Bellharbour in the north of the county where Lagan Asphalt Contracts are carrying out works on the N67 road on behalf of Clare County Council.
On Monday, several men confronted contract staff and expressed dissatisfaction with the affect the works are having in the area. One local claimed the work would result in his land being flooded.
The road improvement works began last month and are due to be completed at the end of this week. The resurfacing work means that the road level has been increased by several inches in some areas.
Gardaí were called to the scene at Bellharbour village when one of several men at the scene produced a shotgun. The firearm was seized by Gardaí who are now investigating the matter.
One man said: “I saw a man down at the intersection and he had a few others with him. They were talking away to some workmen and then I saw a shotgun. He wasn’t waving around or anything but I was worried when I saw the gun.”
“I can see where some people might have a problem with the works. The road outside my house was raised by the best part of three inches but they levelled it off so there wouldn’t be a lip coming out my driveway onto the road,” the local said.
Gardaí were also called after a man parked a vehicle and trailer close to where the works were being carried out. It’s understood the vehicle was parked in a public place and not in a dangerous manner so no action could be taken.
Clare County Council confirmed the works are being undertaken on their behalf by Lagan Asphalt Contracts.
The three-week contract, which is funded by Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII), involves the laying of a new road surface on a 6km section of the N67 between Kinvara and Ballyvaughan.
A comment from the contractor is awaited in relation on the firearm incident.