Ballymun, Dublin: Doctor Calls For Full Inquiry Into Rachel Peavoy’s Hypothermia Death In “Perilously Cold” Council Flat

2 Feb

BALLYMUN: DUBLIN:

DOCTOR CALLS FOR FULL INQUIRY INTO RACHEL PEAVOY’S HYPOTHERMIA DEATH IN “PERILOUSLY COLD” COUNCIL FLAT:

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

DUBLIN City Council continued to fail to provide alternative sources of heating during the recent cold spell to tenants who refused to leave their homes in Ballymun flat complexes undergoing regeneration work, despite the earlier death of a young woman from hypothermia.

Last night the family of 30-year-old Rachel Peavoy, who a coroner’s court last week found had died of hypothermia in her Dublin City Council flat last January, said they were distraught over the death of the young mother-of-two.

Ms Peavoy died of hypothermia after the council turned off her heating in January 2010 during one of the coldest ever periods.

Social campaigner Fr Peter McVerry, www.pmvtrust.ie  

who lives in the adjacent block to Ms Peavoy, said during the recent cold weather he had been approached by a woman in a similar situation seeking an alternative heating source due to the council turning off her heating system.

“There is a centralised central heating system in Ballymun which means all the flats in a complex are heated from a central boiler in the case of the regeneration. In a block of flats where there are only one or two families left the system is closed down as it involves heating 90 to 100 flats which are empty. People in Ballymun don’t have alternative forms of heating because the central heating system is very good.”

It is believed that Ms Peavoy may have been offered accommodation elsewhere in Ballymun during the regeneration of her block but had requested to stay in her home.

Fr McVerry added: “Only a week before Christmas another lady came to me who was in a similar situation, her heating had been turned off and she was frozen. People on social welfare often don’t have money to spend on new heaters and this woman came to me and I got her two heaters.”

The Dublin coroner’s court heard last week that Ms Peavoy visited her GP one month before her death to request a letter for heating costs. The inquest was adjourned until February 24 to obtain further statements about the condition of Ms Peavoy’s flat.

Cork city councillor Ted Tynan said the issue of people lacking the basic right to heat was countrywide due to people being unable to afford to pay ESB bills.

“People do not risk having their electricity supply disconnected unless they are in dire trouble with their family finances,” he said.

————–

Saturday January 29 2011

A YOUNG mother froze to death in her Dublin flat after the council refused to restore her heating.

Rachel Peavoy (30), a mother-of-two, died of hypothermia in the bedroom of her flat during a lengthy cold snap.

She had appealed to the council to restore her central heating as she shared the flat with her two young sons, but she was unsuccessful.

Housing Minister Noel Ahern made representations on behalf of Ms Peavoy; after she was told her heating would not be reconnected.

She was found dead in her Ballymun flat on January 11 last year. Gardai who arrived at the scene noted the flat was “freezing”.

Following the shocking inquest, a doctor has called for a public inquiry into the death of the mother-of-two.

A preliminary hearing at Dublin City Corner’s Court was told of Rachel’s appeals for help to heat her flat.

The inquest was told that less than a month before she died of the cold, the young mother had gone to her doctor and asked for a letter for heating costs.

Housing Minister Noel Ahern also made a plea to the council on her behalf. The court heard that the council told the young mother that it was ‘impossible’ to restore heating because flats around her were vacant and because regeneration work was ongoing.

The case involved “a young woman with no other system disorder” dying of hypothermia and there was “ample evidence” that the heating was not working, said Dr Ciaran Craven, who represented the family at the inquest.

Calling for a full inquiry into the death, Dr Craven told Coroner Dr Brian Farrell that the flat had been “perilously cold” on the night of the death.

He called for a full inquiry into the death.

The inquest was told Ms Peavoy suffered from back pain and had a borderline personality disorder.

 Brother

  

 

 

She had last spoken to her mother, Celine, the day before she was found dead.

 

She had asked her mother to mind her two sons, Leon and Warren, and said she was turning her phone off because she could not sleep. The next day, after numerous attempts to contact Rachel, her brother Leon Peavoy and friend Jacqueline Johnston let themselves into her flat. They found her body in the main bedroom.

 

There was no representative from Dublin City Council at the hearing yesterday.

 

The inquest was adjourned until February 24 to obtain further statements about the conditions of Ms Peavoy’s flat.

  

 

hnews@herald.ie

  

– Alan O’Keeffe

 

———————

 

Saturday January 29 2011

DUBLIN City Council was yesterday accused of contributing to the death of a young mother, after the heating in her flat was allegedly disconnected in the depths of winter.

 

A preliminary hearing at Dublin City Corner’s Court into the death of Rachel Peavoy (30) was told that the young woman died from hypothermia and that continued appeals to turn back on her central heating fell on deaf ears.

The single mother of two sons from Shangan Road, Ballymun, was found dead in her flat not long after Christmas, on January 11, 2010.

The court heard that Housing Minister Noel Ahern made representations on behalf of Ms Peavoy; after she was told her heating would not be reconnected during the freak cold snap last January, which saw temperatures plummet well below zero.

The court heard that the council told the young mother that this was impossible because flats around her were vacant due to regeneration.

The case involved “a young woman with no other system disorder” dying of hypothermia and there was “ample evidence” that the heating was not working, council for the family Dr Ciaran Craven told the court yesterday.

Calling for a full inquiry into the death, Dr Craven told Dublin City Coroner Dr Brian Farrell that the flat had been “perilously cold” on the night of the death, a description supported by the garda who had examined the scene and noted the flat was “freezing”.

The court heard that Ms Peavoy had last spoken to her mother, Celine, the day before she was found dead.

She had asked her mother to mind her two sons, Leon and Warren, and said she was turning her phone off because she couldn’t sleep.

The next day, after numerous unsuccessful attempts to contact Ms Peavoy, her brother Leon Peavoy and friend Jacqueline Johnston let themselves into her flat.

Ms Johnston found the body of her friend in the main bedroom, the court was told.

There was no representative from the council in the court at the time.

The case was adjourned until February 24 in order to obtain further statements about the conditions of Ms Peavoy’s flat.

– Luke Byrne

Irish Independent

 

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One Response to “Ballymun, Dublin: Doctor Calls For Full Inquiry Into Rachel Peavoy’s Hypothermia Death In “Perilously Cold” Council Flat”

  1. Rita Cahill 1MayJ2011 at 6:42 pm #

    I Think it is a Disgrace at this Stage in Age that in the 21st Century not 1940’s but in 2011 that a Young healthy woman who has died of Hypothermia and that the DCC did Nothing about the Problem, for Christ sake this is a disgrace and Racheal ( RIP ) leaves two young son’s behind one aged 7 and the other aged 11, what gets to me more that Racheal’s Family have not got any answers to put the family at ease, only to be told by a coroner inquest that she had died from misadventure, DCC have got away with far too much and Justice needs to be done and the Truth needs to come out by the Guilty ones who were suppose to be Racheal’s Landlords.
    Rita

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