Kids’ ambulance robbed at ploughing

Around €800 of medical equipment was stolen by callous thieves from a special children’s ambulance at this year’s National Ploughing Championships.

Around €800 of medical equipment was stolen by callous thieves from a special children’s ambulance at this year’s National Ploughing Championships.

The Bumbleance, which transports extremely ill children and their parents from their homes to hospitals and hospices around the country, was robbed on the final day of the ploughing, last Thursday, September 25. Some time between 12 and 1pm, assorted medical equipment including bandages, dressings for injuries and an oxygen saturation monitor was taken, in what is described by local gardaí as a motiveless crime.

A spokesperson at Portlaoise Garda Station has said that the equipment would be of no benefit to thieves, and the gardaí are currently investigating. The spokesperson said that apart from this one incident the ploughing championships in Ratheniska went very well this year, and the gardaí wish to thank the local community for their patience and assistance over the three days of the event.

In the wake of the theft of the medical supplies, it has been reported that the grocery chain LIDL has donated €5,000 to Bumbleance.

In other crime news locally burglaries continue to be a blight, with homes and businesses hit across the county within the last seven days.

A black BMW with a partial licence plate reading of 04-LK was seen fleeing the scene of a burglary in the Ballybrittas area on Friday, September 26. Three males were disturbed during a house break-in and it is believed they fled the scene in the car. It is unknown at present whether the car and its occupants were involved in any other break-ins.

In some of the home break-ins across the county cash and coin jars were taken, while there was electronic equipment such as iPads taken from a home in the Portlaoise area at the weekend.

The gardaí are advising owners of electronic goods to back up their files using iCloud, or use tracking apps on devices such as mobile phones, laptops and iPads.

There was also a burglary from a business in the Arles area early last week in which an amount of cash was stolen.

Anyone with any information on any of these crimes should contact the Portlaoise Garda Station on 05786 74100.