Fine Gael Councillor Michael Murphy is calling on the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources to prioritise the introduction of postcodes, saying that the emergency services are frequently encountering problems finding addresses for callouts.
â€œThe introduction of postcodes would be of huge benefit to the emergency services. Ireland saw significant development in the last ten years.
â€œHowever, as a consequence, we now have many houses and indeed estates poorly marked while rural addresses in particular might only give a location within a few miles. This can often lead to confusion over the exact location of an address.
â€œFor example, the name of a townland may be replicated in several areas. Also many houses in our larger estates do not display any house number, some streets in these estates donâ€™t even have a nameplate.â€
Cllr Murphy continued: â€œFire, ambulance and garda personnel are being delayed from attending callouts. If every property had a postcode that can then be linked to a GPS tracking device in a vehicle, this could be of huge assistance to those drivers. At such callouts, minutes can make all the difference and can even, on occasion, save a life.
â€œThe HSE recognises that there is a problem with finding addresses, particularly in rural areas, and said that the issue sometimes affected response times. Iâ€™m also involved with a number of community alert groups who have also identified this as a huge problem.â€
â€œPostcodes also have the potential to drive down delivery costs for businesses. I welcome the fact that calls for the introduction of postcodes have also been supported by Retail Excellence Ireland. In the last few weeks, Christoff Mueller, Chairman of An Post, has also supported this call.
â€œWhile the Government has stated its intention to develop a national postcode system, indeed my understanding is that the tender process has been completed over a year ago, yet there is no sign of its introduction. I am therefore calling on the Minister to proceed at the earliest opportunity. I am formally writing to the Minister and to the Oireachtas Commitee on Transport and Communications to this effect. I am also tabling a motion at the June meeting of South Tipperary County Council asking the members and Council to support this callâ€ concluded Cllr Murphy.