A Mayo TD says the directive issued to Coast Guard members, no longer permitting them to use emergency lights and sirens on vehicles while driving, further demonstrates the need for the Coast Guard to be put on a statutory basis.

The Fianna Fail Deputy leader Dara Calleary says the Irish Coast Guard is one of Ireland's four principal emergency services, yet it is the only blue light service not covered by Statutory Instrument legislation which ensures standalone status.

Deputy Calleary says the directive issued to coast guard members no longer permitting them to use emergency lights and sirens has caused concern about potential delays when travelling to incidents.

He believes the Coast Guard needs to be recognised as a statutory body to ensure investment in stations and to recognise the important service they provide

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