Harbour guard needed after vandals strike?
Vandalism and robberies have reached such an alarming peak in the harbour area that Wicklow Harbour commissioners have been forced to consider employing security personnel to carry out nightly patrols.
The latest acts in a wave of vandalism have resulte in over €1,000 worth of damage being caused to the lighthouse at the east pier.
Harbour master, Captain RF Flood, reported ot the commissioners on Tuesday night that six panes of glass had been broken in the lighthouse and four panes vandalised.
The damage was caused by somebody using an airgun or rifle.
Thirty-two holes were found in the glass area of the lighthouse and they were most likely cause by a .22 rifle.
As a result of the damage, the commissioners have instructed their law agent to lodge a malicious injury claim with Wicklow County Council in the sum of €2,000.
The harbour master reported that he counted 23 holes in the glass on the seaward side of the lighthouse.
Chairman Paddy Smith said the vandals were using ball-bearings and slings as well.
The harbour master also reported that windows in the harbour canteen were also vandalised, and windows in the Goode Concrete premises were also broken.
Commissioner Frank Conway reported that one ship had been burgled twice and yachts had also been broken into. He added: ‘A lot of property has been stolen and I think we should write and ask the garda superintendent what is being done about it.’
Mr Smith urged people to report vandalism to the gardai.
Mr Conway: ‘It is only common sense that people who see vandalism taking place should report it.’
Commissioner Denis Teevan said that they would have to start looking at the security aspect of the harbour and, possibly, to hire security - it had come to that stage.
Commissioner Pat Clarke said it would cost €50 per week to have the harbour area patrolled eight or ten times each night.