Athy teenager dies in horror road smash

Scene of fatal accident at Burton crossroad on N78, Athy. Photo: Michael O'Rourke
An Athy teenager was one of four young women who were killed in a head on collision at Burtown, Athy last night (Tuesday January 6).

An Athy teenager was one of four young women who were killed in a head on collision at Burtown, Athy last night (Tuesday January 6).

Aisling Middleton from Coney Meadows, Coneyboro, Athy was killed in the horrific accident last night, which also claimed the lives of three of her friends. The 19-year-old, who was originally from Rathcoole, was studying English and Anthropology at NUI Maynooth. The girls had all attended St Leo’s College in Carlow together.

Chermaine Carroll (20), Pollerton,Carlow; Niamh Doyle (19), Mount Leinster Park, Carlow; and Gemma Nolan (19) from Tullow Road, Carlow also lost their lives. The driver of the car, Dayna Kearney (20) from Crosneen, Carlow is in critical condition.

The crash occurred at 9.45pm approximately three miles from Junction 3 of the M9 heading for Athy on the N78. The five students were travelling in the Volkswagen car, which collided with the Volkswagen van.

The victims were pronounced dead at the scene and taken to Naas Hospital. The two Polish men, who were travelling in the van, were also taken to Naas hospital.

The road will remain closed until later today to facilitate a forensic collision examination and diversions are in place.

Local councillor, Thomas Redmond, who lives in the same estate as the Athy girl, expressed the dismay felt by the local residents and the Athy community.

“It’s absolutely terrible. The whole town is very sombre. People are devastated by the news,” he said.

Cllr Martin Miley stressed; “It’s absolutely horrific. I’ve just left the scene of the crash. The van and the car are still there. It’s a Volkswagen van, but it’s hard to make out what make the car is,” he said.

“This is a life changing experience for any community and for the people left behind.”

Witnesses to the collision are asked to contact the Gardai in Athy on 059 8634210 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.