CAMERAS have been ruled out a deterrent to vandalism at the cemetery in Naas.
Several headstones were badly damaged less than two weeks ago but Naas Town Council officials do not believe a CCTV system can solve the problem unless images from the cemetery are actively monitored actively monitored.
“This was an outrageous attack and I believe we should do all we can to ensure it does not happen again. A similar incident took place in Newbridge and I hope there is nothing more than coincidence to this. I believe a CCTV system could help to put a stop to this,” Cllr. Ger Dunne told the Leader.
However Town Clerk Ken Kavanagh has conceded that there is little that can be done to prevent people entering the cemetery at night time.
Meanwhile the town council is seeking quotes to have the damage to headstones and graves repaired.
David Reel, Town Engineer, said it might not be possible to properly repair some of the older monuments which were damaged.
Most of the damage took place in the older section of St. Corban’s Cemetery and the council is endeavouring to contact any remaining families of the deceased in the area. The council has some addresses of family members.
But because some of the deaths took place many years ago, family members in some cases have moved on and it is not known if any or how many still exist or where some are living.
Mr. Reel said that CCTV only works properly when there is somebody watching the images on a 24 hours a day basis in a control room such as the gardai, who can send a car to the site.
Another councillor, Seamie Moore, questioned the efficiency of the cameras operating in Naas .
He said a door was “smashed” some 30 yards from a camera but the lens was “turned in a direction to control traffic.”
He claimed the cameras in the town centre do not provide 360 degree coverage automatically and it’s necessary for an operator to change the direction of the lens to achieve this.
He said there is a need to know how both the gardai and Kildare County Council use the system.