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Dublin: 5 °C Sunday 9 December, 2018
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Buses, oil and Facebook passwords: the week in statistics

Plus: An all-time record for Irish exports, and how many of the government’s 109 TDs were in the Dáíl on Wednesday night…

Okay, so it's not the lock on the door to the Dáil chamber - but do you know how many Government ministers and TDs managed to get
Okay, so it's not the lock on the door to the Dáil chamber - but do you know how many Government ministers and TDs managed to get "locked out" of that chamber this week?
Image: Aunt Owwee via Flickr.com

EVERY WEEK, TheJournal.ieoffers you a selection of statistics and numerical nuggets to help you digest the week that has just passed.

16 – The number of Afghan civilians killed by a US soldier who opened fire on villagers in the south of the country last Sunday. Nine of the deceased were children.

€92,936,000,000 – The total value of the goods and services exported by Ireland in 2011. That’s according to CSO stats released on Friday, and it’s an all-time record. The figures prompted Michael Noonan to suggest that Ireland’s economy could “take off like a rocket” once other countries’ economies recovered and consumers in Europe and the US started buying more.

22 – The number of schoolchildren who died on Tuesday evening when the bus on which they were travelling hit the wall in a side of a tunnel in Switzerland. The children were pupils in two schools in Belgium and the Netherlands who were returning from a skiing trip. Six adults also died.

3,514 – The number of barrels of oil per day that could be drawn from the Barryroe Well off Cork. Exploration company Providence Resources, which is mining the well, says it could have a total capacity of one billion barrels.

91 – The number of previous offences committed by Martin McDermott, the man who absconded from a prison in Cavan on Thursday, prior to his conviction for the manslaughter of Garda Gary McLoughlin. He had served eight months of his seven-year sentence for that death before he missed a roll call at Loughan House, and was arrested again in Derry yesterday.

€85,000 – The amount spent by the Department of Finance in hiring an internal candidate to replace Kevin Cardiff as its chief civil servant. John Moran was appointed after Cardiff moved to the European Court of Auditors, but only after €10,000 was spent on advertising, and €75,000 on two executive search firms.

9 out of 16 – The number of government members who voted against a motion in the Oireachtas finance committee, hoping to stop Central Bank governor Patrick Honohan from being hauled before them to discuss the Anglo promissory notes. There was only one problem: all 11 of the opposition members were there for the vote, meaning the government was handed a rare defeat. One Fine Gael TD said he had left to round up his absent colleagues, only to end up being locked out of the room.

0 out of 109 - The number of government ministers and TDs who, just a few minutes later, were in the Dáil chamber during a debate on mortgage interest rates. The only government TD present was Fine Gael’s Catherine Byrne, who was acting as Chairman – and who advised angry opposition TDs that it was not possible to suspend business until a government member showed up.

12 – The age of a girl who is suing her school in New York State, claiming she was forced to reveal her Facebook password to staff members. The girl says she was being disciplined for aggressive comments about a staff member, and being investigated after allegedly having a Facebook chat about sex with a male pupil, when school officials demanded her password to investigate.

251,458 – The number of properties which had registered for the household charge by 5pm on Thursday evening. That’s around one sixth of the total number of homes which are liable for the €100 fee.

149 – The combined number of primary and secondary schools set to be built under a new programme of school construction outlined by Ruairi Quinn earlier this week. Primary teachers dispute the Department’s figure of 106 new primary schools, however, saying only 17 of the schools are new institutions, with the rest merely being replacement buildings for existing ones.

16 – The number of consecutive races that racehorse Big Buck’s has won, after taking victory in the World Hurdle at Cheltenham this week. TheScore.ie’s Niall Kelly advises your writer that the Paul Nicholls-trained horse has won every race its first run since November 2008. That 16-in-a-row is a joint record, by the way.

€810.61 – The amount that the average Irish household spends every week, according to new CSO data. Mortgage or rent repayments now account for the most of the spending, at 18.2 per cent, overtaking spending on food which is at 16.2 per cent.

1581 - The number of years since Palladius was sent to Ireland by Pope Celestine I to convert Ireland to Christianity. Palladius is an often overlooked figure in Irish history – but most modern theorists believe that the modern image and reputation of St Patrick also includes many of the works that were undertaken by Palladius, who was sent to Ireland before him.

Just for the day that’s in it, and all that.

Check out our previous ‘In numbers’ pieces >

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About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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