Two men die after their jeep is swept away by river on Christmas Day

Bodies of victims found after major search operation involving Garda divers and the Coastguard

David Young
Tuesday 26 December 2017 00:02
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(File photo)
(File photo)

Two men have died after their jeep was swept away in a river on Christmas Day.

A 19-year-old man who was also in the vehicle when it entered the Carrownisky River in County Mayo managed to escape and reach land.

Gardai confirmed the bodies of the two victims - aged 26 and 27 - were found in the afternoon after a major search operation involving Garda divers and the Coastguard.

The vehicle entered the water near Louisburgh at about 2.30am. It was fully submerged as it was swept away.

The man who managed to escape raised the alarm at about 3am. Gardai are continuing to investigate the cause of the incident.

It is understood the men were returning to their homes in the area after a night socialising with friends.

The incident happened as the jeep was crossing a stretch of water that had become swollen amid bad weather conditions.It is understood the men were returning to their homes in the area after a night socialising with friends.

Mayo county councillor Christy Hyland said the victims were from well-known and respected families in the area.

"Our thoughts go out to their loved ones, their families and friends," he said. "The whole community is in shock. This is a terrible tragedy to happen at any time, but especially on Christmas morning."

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