Statement by Minister Flanagan on Berkeley Tragedy17 June 2015
“Today, my Department and our Consulate in San Francisco, continue to provide practical support and assistance to the bereaved, the injured and the students affected following the tragedy in Berkeley.
“Family members of the deceased and injured are travelling to San Francisco today, where they will be met on arrival by a team from our Consulate in San Francisco. A consular team from my Department provided support to them at Dublin Airport before they travelled.
“Our Consulate in San Francisco is working with the local authorities and Irish community organisations to provide transport and accommodation to those who need it. I would like to thank the Irish community in San Francisco, local residents and the local authorities, all of whom have generously offered assistance and support to those affected by this devastating accident.
“We are also conscious that many Irish students were not physically injured, but were left deeply shocked and saddened by the loss of friends and classmates in this terrible accident. The Consulate has worked with local authorities in Berkeley to set up an incident centre in Berkeley, where grief counsellors will be on site and people will also have facilities to make phone calls home.
“I would encourage any families who have concerns about any loved ones in San Francisco and who may require these services to contact the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.
“Two officers from Embassy Washington have arrived in San Francisco to provide further support to the Consulate team today, while our Consulates in New York and Boston are on standby to assist families travelling via those cities.
“To date the Department’s Consular Emergency Response Centre has handled over 500 calls from concerned family members and friends and we remain ready to respond. ”
17 June 2015