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Dublin: 2°C Monday 12 April 2021

Remains found on west coast beach confirmed as those of woman buried at sea

The remains were discovered by two walkers on a beach in north Clare in late September.

fanore Fanore, Co Clare Source: Google Maps

SKELETAL REMAINS WASHED up in Co Clare last month have been confirmed as those of a woman who had been buried at sea.

Gardaí say that DNA analysis confirmed the identity of the woman and that her family has been informed.

On 19 September two walkers reported finding a body on rocks at Poulsallagh, near Fanore in north Clare.

Gardaí responded to the call and requested assistance from the Irish Coast Guard as the body was located on the shoreline.

The remains were recovered from the scene and removed to University Hospital Limerick for a post-mortem examination.

Following an initial examination it was confirmed that a post-mortem had previously been carried out on the body and gardaí began working on the theory that the person had been buried at sea.

Investigation concluded

It has since been established that the body was that of a woman who died in late 2016 and had been buried at sea off the west coast.

A Garda spokesman confirmed today that their investigation into the discovery has now concluded.

In Ireland, there is no legislation governing burials at sea. The Merchant Shipping (Salvage and Wreck) Act (1993) allows the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport to make regulations regarding the burial of human remains at sea.

While no such regulations have been made to-date, the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport has developed voluntary guidelines for those considering a burial at sea.

According to the department, these guidelines are based on previous experience and seek to prevent distressing situations such as where a body is returned to shore.

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Patrick Flynn

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