Photo: Magheracloone GAA club
Photo: Magheracloone GAA club

100-metre sinkhole in Co Monaghan likely caused by mining collapse

September 27th, 2018

A 100-meter sized sinkhole that opened up across a local GAA pitch in Co Monaghan on Monday morning was likely caused by the collapse of pillars in a disused mining shaft in the area.

The land subsidence event damaged two football pitches at Magheracloone GAA club, as well as the car park and the club building.

Gyproc, which owns the disused Drumgossatt mine, commissioned an independent technical report to investigate the possible causes of the sinkhole.

120m disturbance zone

The plaster and plasterboard manufacturer said that initial findings indicate that recent mining operations to transport and store water in an old part of the mine resulted in the collapse of some mining pillars.

The disturbance zone is 120m in radius, the company said, with the possibility of further subsidence in this zone as the ground settles over the coming weeks.

“Gyproc is in regular contact with the relevant experts from Monaghan County Council and other authorities to assess the situation and ensure appropriate support measures are in place to minimise disruption,” a company statement reads.

The company said that it is also working with the GAA club and residents at five properties located at the perimeter of the affected area to assess the potential impact of the incident.

Officials from Monaghan County Council and An Garda Siochana, along with the Department of the Environment and the EPA met with representatives of Gyproc yesterday afternoon.

While awaiting a full analysis of the incident from the company, several roads in the Magheracloone area will remain closed and until mid-October, the Council said.

The area in the vicinity of the GAA clubhouse will also remain closed to the public., the Council said, warning locals that the site is “unsafe” and to “avoid the area and to observe the detours in place”.

Business Affected

In a statement released via social media, Magheracloone GAA said that the club is “truly devastated” by the incident and has started a GoFundMe campaign to source and set up temporary facilities.

“As a result of the sudden closure of our Club grounds we are unable to access any of our training equipment,” the club said.

“We don’t have any footballs, cones, bibs or water bottles. Please support our club.” the statement added, with over €5,000 raised to date.

Several businesses in the largely industrial area are also affected by the local road closure, cutting them off from suppliers and customers.

 

About the Author

Niall Sargent

Niall is the Editor of The Green News. He is a multimedia journalist, with an MA in Investigative Journalism from City University, London

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