Written Answers. - Tuskar Rock Air Crash.

Trevor Sargent

Question:

210 Mr. Sargent asked the Minister for Public Enterprise the reason for the failure to release the State papers, under the 30 year rule, in relation to the Tuskar Rock air crash; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1303/99]

The crash of the Aer Lingus Viscount St. Phelim, occurred on the 24 March 1968.

The search and rescue phase of this accident lasted for several days. The search for, and the recovery of the wreckage lasted in stages, up to August 1969. The report of the investigation was published in September 1970. The question of the archiving and release of this Department's files under the 30 year rule, therefore, will be considered in the context of papers being released through that process in 2001. In considering that question, regard will have to be had to the frequency with which officials of this Department require to refer to these files on an ongoing basis.
As the Deputy may be aware, I have recently initiated a complete review of these files.
I should also add that my Department continues to facilitate access to these files under appropriate arrangements for interested parties and in particular to relatives of victims of the Tuskar Rock tragedy and their representatives.