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25/09/2021

Firefighters forced to withdraw from Galliagh after coming under attack by anti-social youths

Car burnt out in Galliagh
Firefighters came under attack from stone throwing youths while responding to a blaze in Galliagh at the weekend.
It was one of several incidents in the Galliagh area of the city on Friday night which prompted Sinn Féin Councillor Caoimhe McKnight to call for an end to "death driving" before someone is "seriously hurt or worse".
Death driving was preceded by bin fires in the Bracken Park area which had to be dealt with by the Northern Ireland Fire and Rsecue Service (NIFRS).
NIFRS group commander Alan O'Neill said the fire service was forced to withdraw from the Galliagh area after being confronted by stone throwing youths.
A rubbish fire was lit around 11pm at Bracken Park which fire crews attended.
"As they arrived into the area they were aware there was a bit of tension and as they were getting ready to put the fire out a number of youths came around the corner with their hands raised as if they were going to throw stones.
"So as normal if it's not going to cause damage to property or be any more dangerous it's safer for us to just leave it."
Revealing that stones were thrown at vehicles but did not make contact, he added,"the important thing is to ensure our crews aren't injured or appliances damaged when these incidents occur."
Commander O'Neill said he was unaware of the joyriding incident when speaking to the Derry News on Saturday.
However, Sinn Féin councillor Caoimhe McKnight confirmed that residents reported the car death driving around the Galliagh area and along a pedestrianised zone at Collon Lane.
"The car was then ignited in the Carnhill area at approximately 11am," she explained.
"As far as we are aware the car is not stolen and is therefore a run around car that has been sold cheaply to death drivers.
"I would urge anyone who is selling a car, especially if it is a cheap price, to take some responsibility for who they are selling to. They need to ask themselves if the person they are selling to can tax and insure it."
Cllr McKnight continued: "They also need to ensure the correct paper work is filled out and sent into the DVLA as responsibility for any damage caused could come back to them.
"The community in Galliagh and Carnhill repeatedly call for this anti-community behaviour to stop. These people are only destroying their own community and are only taking away from the good that is happening in the area.
"It is time these people stop holding their community to ransom before someone is serious hurt or worse."

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