Berkeley deaths

Six Irish students have died after a balcony collapsed at an apartment in California

Hugh Linehan, Sorcha Pollak Tue, Jun 16
 
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  • 13:16
    Good afternoon. I'm Hugh Linehan and I'll be bringing you live updates on the unfolding story of the deaths and injuries of a number of Irish people in a balcony collapse in Berkeley, California.
  • 13:18
    Wire reports said five people were dead and eight others were injured. Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has confirmed a number of Irish people are among the dead and injured, .
  • 13:20

  • 13:23
    The statement in full from Charlie Flanagan:

    “It is with great sadness that I confirm that a number of young Irish citizens have lost their lives while a number of others have been seriously injured following the collapse of a balcony in Berkeley, California earlier today.

    “My heart goes out to the families and loved ones of the deceased and those who have been injured in this appalling accident. My Department in Dublin stands ready to provide all possible consular assistance to the Irish citizens affected by this tragedy.

    “Our Consul General in San Francisco is in close contact with the authorities and will be providing assistance to those affected on the ground.

    “It is too early to know the full extent of this dreadful accident but I have opened my Department’s Consular Crisis Centre and activated our emergency response line so we can provide assistance and guidance to the families of those affected and to others who have concerns.

    Anyone with concerns about friends or family in the region, should call the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.”
  • 13:29
    Amy Hollyfield is an ABC7 news reporter in San Francisco


  • 13:29

  • 13:32
    Four people died at the scene and one died later in hospital.


  • 13:35
    Charlie Flanagan. 'The tragedy occurred some time between half past twelve in the morning and one o'clock in the morning.. I understand the police and medical people are keeping in very close contact with the Irish authorities. There was a 21st birthday party and a balcony on the fifth floor collapsed'.
  • 13:37

  • 13:38
    Asked whether the dead and injured were male or female, Mr Flanagan said that he did not have that information yet.
  • 13:40
    The Irish Times's Washington Correspondent, Simon Carswell, says the balcony-collapse house is an area where many Irish J-1 students stay, beside UC Berkeley campus in downtown Berkeley.
  • 13:42
    Simon writes that the balcony collapsed during a 21st birthday party attended mainly by Irish students working on J1 visas for the summer. A number of those at the party were from Dublin but students from other parts of the country were also there.
  • 13:43

  • 13:44

  • 13:49
    Eyewitness talking to Joe Duffy on RTE's Liveline. "There were people laying on the ground. It seemed endless... just one stretcher after another."
  • 13:51

  • 13:55
    More information from another ABC7 reporter, Kristen Sze.




  • 13:56

  • 14:02

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  • 14:09

  • 14:11
    I'm handing over now to my colleague Sorcha Pollak, who'll be continuing with live updates for the afternoon.
  • 14:20
    Sorcha Pollak here taking over from Hugh Linehan. I'll be running the Irish Times live blog coverage of news from Berkeley in California through this afternoon and evening. If anyone has updates from Berkeley please tweet @SorchaPollak or get in touch at spollak@irishtimes.com  
  • 14:21
  • 14:35

    Here's a recap of what we know already from our Washington Correspondent Simon Carswell:

    - Five Irish students have died after a balcony collapsed during a party in Berkeley, California at 12.45am local time, 8.45 Irish time.

    - Four of the students died at the scene and a fifth died in the hospital.

    - At least eight others were injured, some critically.

    - It is believed up to 14 people were on the balcony when it collapsed.

    - The property was on Kittredge Street – close to the University of California, Berkeley.

    - The fourth floor balcony collapsed during a 21st birthday party attended mainly by Irish students working on J1 visas for the summer.

    - A number of those at the party were from Dublin but students from other parts of the country were also there.

  • 14:36
  • 14:44

     Why is Berkeley a popular choice for Irish J1 students?

    Berkeley is a city located on the east shore of San Francisco Bay. With a population of just over 112,000, the city is best known as the home of the University of California, is one of the highest ranking universities in the US.

    Despite its small size by US standards, Berkeley has good transport links with San Francisco and is one of many US locations favoured by Irish students who spend the summer working under the J-1 visa programme,  

    More than 8,000 applications were made by Irish students for J-1 visas this year and participants can spend up to 4 months in the US under the terms of the programme.

    To avail of the J-1 visa, participants must be third-level students actively pursuing a degree or a full-time course of study at an accredited academic institution and are expected to return home once the visa expires.

  • 14:46
    Latest newsfrom Simon Carswell in the US:  
  • 14:48
  • 14:49
  • 14:54

    Anyone with concerns about friends or family in the region, should call the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.  


    Callers are reminded that the line is extremely busy and it may take a while to get through. However, the above number is correct.  

  • 14:55
  • 14:59

    Archbishop Eamon Martin has released a statement following the deaths of the Irish students in Berkeley, California.

    “Like many others, I am shocked and deeply saddened to hear the reports of the tragic deaths of five Irish students earlier today in Berkeley, California.

    “This devastating news will be felt by Irish people everywhere, and particularly by those who have family and friends abroad. I pray that the eight injured students will fully recover from this terrible accident.

    “The death of a child or young person is the worst news that a parent can receive. At this profoundly painful time I pray for those who have died, and ask also for prayerful support for their grieving families, fellow students and loved ones.”

  • 15:17

    According to the Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan, the authorities in the US, in conjunction with the Department of Foreign Affairs, are in the process of contacting the families of the deceased.

    “It is with great sadness I can confirm, following a tragic accident in Berkeley, San Francisco a few hours ago five Irish students have lost their lives,” the Minister told a media briefing at Government buildings at 1.45 pm.

    “This is a very, very challenging and difficult time for families, parents and friends of those directly involved. It has been an appalling tragedy, an appalling loss of life for young people whose hopes and dreams, future have suddenly and without notice been shattered.”

    He added “a number of other students have been injured - seven, eight or nine. My understanding is all of those are Irish citizens, Irish students” and they are being treated at a hospital in San Francisco.

    “I have spoken directly with US ambassador Kevin O’Malley who has offered his condolences to the Irish people but also his assistance at this time of great tragedy and loss of life of young Irish people.”

    He said the Department’s consular general Philip Grant was assisting at the scene and liaising with US police and medical authorities.

    “We will continue to update in terms of public information as we receive that information, and obviously it may take some time before the full and complete picture emerges.

    “My understanding is that they are J1 students, and I think it’s fairly clear to suggest they are young people. I don’t have details in terms of names, in terms of identity, in terms of where they are from.

    "But I think it’s reasonable to assume that they are all young, Irish J1 students in California and it’s also noteworthy that up to 35 per cent of our J1 student complement visits the California region during their J1 stay.”

  • 15:19
  • 15:20
  • 15:21
  • 15:21
  • 15:31

    An Taoiseach Enda Kenny has given a statement in the Dáil:

    “I’m shocked and saddened to hear of the balcony collapse in Berkeley California. My heart breaks for parents who have lost children this morning and I can only imagine the fear in the hearts of other parents who have children in California this summer as they seek to contact them now.

    “It is truly terrible to have such a serious and sad incident take place at the beginning of a summer of adventure and opportunity for so many young people on J1 visas in the United States.”

  • 15:34

    Irish Times journalist Peter Murtagh has spoken to Carrie Olsen, a preservation expert who was a member of the City of Berkeley Design Review Committee for 14 years.

    Ms Olsen said a one bed apartment in Berkeley would typically rent for between $3,000 and $3,500 per month (€2,670 to €3,200 p/m).

    The Library Gardens building, where the accident happend, was next to the City’s main library, opposite a substantial high school and within walking distance of Berkeley University and hence attractive to students.

    Mass occupancy of rooms was not uncommon because of high rents, she said.

  • 15:47

    Statement from Micheál Martin, leader of Fianna Fáil:

    “May I join with the Taoiseach on my own behalf and on behalf of my party in offering our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of all those who were killed and injured in Berkeley in California.

    "Our hearts and minds go out to the families, to the parents in particular, that their young children, that their lives should be taken from them in their prime, in the fullness and in the beauty of an American summer looking forward to a great number of months there as so many Irish have done before them.

    "It is very, very sad news indeed, and I think all of us in the house are united in conveying our deepest sympathies to all those who have been bereaved.”

    Gerry Adams also extended condolences.

  • 15:53
  • 15:54

    Reminder:

    Anyone with concerns about friends or family in the region, should call the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.

    Callers are reminded that the line is extremely busy and it may take a while to get through. However, the above number is correct.

     

  • 15:56
  • 15:59

    Statement from Tánaiste Joan Burton:

    “My heart goes out to the families of the Irish students who died tragically in Berkeley early today.

    “Hearing news like this about a loved one far away would be any parent’s worst nightmare.

    “I understand that the Irish Consul General in San Francisco is in close contact with the authorities and will be providing assistance to those affected on the ground.

    “I will be monitoring the situation with regard to those who have been hurt in the incident and I sincerely hope that those being treated for serious injuries will make a recovery.”

  • 16:08
  • 16:21

    Inside Bay Area News  has published an interview with Dan Sullivan (21), a student from UCD who had been in the US for less than three weeks and was living on the first floor of the Library Gardens housing complex where the incident occurred.

    "We just heard a bang in the middle of night and shouting," he said. Mr Sullivan wasn't at the party, but knew someone there.

    "It's just a shocker, it's crazy," said Mr Sullivan who is working as a labourer. He said some of the Irish students were also workers, while others work in local restaurants.

    Mark Neville, another student from Ireland who lives in the building, said he was outside when he heard commotion.


    "I saw rubble on the street, and a bunch of students crying," he said.
    Gerald Robinson (65) had attended a movie nearby and was sitting a car when he saw ambulances.

    He went to see what had happened and some frantic young people flagged him down and asked him for a ride to the hospital.

    He took the man and woman to Highland Hospital in Oakland, where many people gathered. He stayed for about an hour and said it was "a very emotional" scene.

  • 16:24
  • 16:26

    President Michael D Higgins was on an official visit to the EXPO 2015 exhibition in Milan on Tuesday when he was informed of the deaths of the five Irish students and immediately expressed his sense of solidarity with the families of the victims.

    “I have heard with the greatest sadness of the terrible loss of life of young Irish people and the critical injury of others in Berkeley, California today.

    “My heart goes out to the families and loved one’s of all those involved. I have been informed of the consular assistance being provided to assist all of the families involved and I have asked to be kept informed as further details emerge.”

  • 16:34

    The Lord Mayor of Dublin, Christy Burke has announced that a Book of Condolence for the victims of the balcony collapse in Berkeley, California will open later this week.

    Members of the public are invited to sign the Book of Condolence at The Mansion House, Dawson Street, Dublin 2 as follows:

    Thursday, June 18th 10am – 4pm

    Friday, June 19th 10am – 4pm

    “I am opening a Book of Condolence to allow the people of Dublin to express their sympathies to the families and friends of those who died in this terrible tragedy,” said Mr Burke.

    “I offer my personal sympathy to all who have suffered the loss of loved ones and, at this time, my thoughts and prayers are with all those who have been affected by this tragic event.”

  • 16:40
    Breaking news:
  • 16:42

    Breaking news with the latest from Simon Carswell in the US:


    A sixth victim has died at the hospital.


    Four dead at the scene, two died in hospital, two more in critical (life-threatening) condition.

  • 16:43
  • 16:50

    Another update from Simon Carswell:

    Two of the dead are believed to be female cousins.  

  • 16:58
    An artists impression of what the interior of the <a href='http://www.librarygardens.com/Apartments/module/property_floorplans/property%5Bid%5D/13712/property_floorplan%5Bid%5D/110514/is_premium_view/1/' target='_blank' >Library Gardens apartments</a> look like. Photograph: <a href='http://www.librarygardens.com' target='_blank' >www.librarygardens.com</a>
    An artists impression of what the interior of the Library Gardens apartments look like. Photograph: www.librarygardens.com
  • 17:04

    Cindy Dove, head of Communications for Sutter Health Bay Area, has confirmed that the Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, California has received four patients from the balcony accident.

  • 17:06
  • 17:43
    Debris from a balcony collapse remains on the sidewalk in front of an apartment building new UC Berkeley in Berkeley, California. Six people were killed when a balcony collapsed at an apartment building near the University of California at Berkeley campus. Photograph: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
    Debris from a balcony collapse remains on the sidewalk in front of an apartment building new UC Berkeley in Berkeley, California. Six people were killed when a balcony collapsed at an apartment building near the University of California at Berkeley campus. Photograph: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
  • 17:44
  • 18:11

    Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has described the balcony collapse as a “horrific day for those who have lost loved ones in tragic circumstances in San Francisco and for all those affected”.  

    “Our Consulate in San Francisco and the Department’s Emergency Consular Response Team in Dublin continue to work with the local authorities to identify and make contact with the families of all the Irish students involved in this morning’s tragic incident in Berkley,” said Mr Flanagan.

    “The identities of the deceased Irish citizens are in the process of being officially confirmed. Our thoughts and heartfelt sympathies are with the families and friends of the deceased at this most difficult time.

    “We are also working with the authorities across several hospitals to confirm the extent of the injuries suffered by our citizens involved, and to relay this information to families as soon as possible.

    “Our Consul General in San Francisco is in close contact with Irish community organisations on the ground, and I welcome their offers of assistance and expression of solidarity at this difficult time.

    “My thoughts are also with the many young students, who escaped injury but will be deeply shocked at the events. I would like to pay tribute to those who assisted at the scene and who have been working with the local authorities. These will be difficult days for everyone who has experienced this traumatic event, but the students are not on their own and led by our Consulate in San Francisco all assistance possible will be extended to them.

    “Our Consular Emergency Response line received an unprecedented volume of calls this afternoon. This demonstrates that this is an incident that has touched many Irish families – not just those whose sons and daughters were actually there, but all families who have a loved one travelling this summer.

    I would again urge Irish students in the San Francisco area who have not yet been in touch with their families in Ireland to please do so. To those families who have contacted the Department, I would ask that they update us if they have heard from their loved one.

    “Anyone with concerns about friends or family in the region, should call the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.”

  • 18:20
  • 18:24

    The Council on International Educational Exchange, a US-based J1 visa sponsor that works with the Irish student travel agency USIT, has given The Irish Times the following statement:

    “Everyone at CIEE (Council on International Educational Exchange) is terribly saddened by the tragic loss of young life and the injuries that occurred in the Berkeley balcony collapse today.

    “CIEE is in close contact with the authorities on the scene, the Irish consul in San Francisco and the US Department of State.

    “We are doing everything we can to support the families involved and our other exchange visitors who are staying in the Bay Area.”

  • 18:29
  • 18:48

    The Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has said the most important thing is that contact is made with the families of the deceased.

    Mr Flanagan said “scores of students” would be in shock and suffering trauma following the deaths of six students after a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California.

    The Minister said the department was in contact with airlines and was anxious to assist families and those affected “in any way possible”.


    “There are very dark and challenging days ahead,” said Mr Flanagan, adding that if deemed necessary, the Department of Foreign Affairs would “augment the group” of Irish officials on the ground.


    “I have to say we were very encouraged that there has been a huge outpouring of support and assistance from Irish groups and international groups on the ground in San Francisco.


    “We are anxious to measure the extent, make contact with everybody involved, and make sure contact is made with their parents and loved ones in Ireland.”


    Anyone with concerns about family or friends in the region should contact the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.


    Callers are reminded that the lines are extremely busy and it may take a while to get through.  

  • 18:51
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  • 18:57
  • 19:03
  • 19:08
    <p>People gather at the scene of a balcony collapse in Berkeley, California. Six people died and at least seven are injured after a balcony fell shortly before 1am near the University of California, Berkeley. Photograph: Noah Berger/AP Photo</p>

    People gather at the scene of a balcony collapse in Berkeley, California. Six people died and at least seven are injured after a balcony fell shortly before 1am near the University of California, Berkeley. Photograph: Noah Berger/AP Photo

  • 19:09
  • 19:21
  • 19:29

    A reminder that anyone with concerns about family or friends in the Berkeley region should contact the Emergency Consular Response Team on +353 1 418 0200.

    Callers are reminded that the lines are extremely busy and it may take a while to get through.

  • 19:31

    Byron White of the Berkeley Police Department has said officers received a noise complaint concerning a party in the apartment about an hour before the balcony collapsed at 12.41am (local time).

    The balcony, estimated to have been 5ft by 10ft, separated completely from the building and landed on a lower balcony.

    “What the first responders said is, it was quite disturbing,” Mr White said. “Any time you have a tragedy like this, it’s quite awful.”

  • 19:46

    Carrie Olsen, a preservation expert who was a member of the City of Berkeley Design Review Committee for 14 years, has recalled it assessing the Library Gardens building where the accident happened when it came up for municipal approval.

    Ms Olsen told The Irish Times the balconies were not constructed to hold large numbers of people.


    She was speaking after balcony on the fourth floor at the Library Gardens building collapsed, killing six Irish students and seriously injuring seven others.


    Her committee was not the deciding body when it came to planning and building, she said, but rather concerted itself with appearances in terms of design and layout of floor plans.


    City of Berkeley safety inspectors have reacted to the deaths by banning access to all remaining balconies in the Library Gardens complex.


    It was not clear from photographs of the collapsed balcony how the balustrade of the balcony was attached to the facade.


    The Irish Times has submitted several queries relating to the safety permits issued by the city’s Planning and Development Department, to Matthair Mchakko, public affairs officer attached to the city mayor’s office and replies are awaited.

    A one bed apartment in Berkeley would typically rent for between $3,000 and $3,500 per month (€2,670 to €3,200 per month).

     

  • 19:48
  • 19:58
  • 20:14

    The city of Berkeley has released a statement following the balcony collapse on Tuesday morning.

    “City of Berkeley staff from Police, Fire and Building & Safety have been responding to the incident and taking all necessary steps to safely secure the area and investigate the cause.

    The injured were transported to Highland Hospital in Oakland, Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley, and John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek. Due to privacy concerns, the City cannot release the names of the injured.

    Building inspectors visited the building at 2020 Kittredge Street early Tuesday morning.

    The balcony for the affected unit, as well as the three other similar balconies in the building, have each been red-tagged, prohibiting access to those areas.

    The City has ordered the property owner to immediately remove the failed balcony and to perform a structural assessment of the remaining balconies within 48 hours.

    The building finished construction in January 2007.

    A press conference will be held at 1pm today (9pm Irish time) on the back patio of Berkeley City Hall, 2180 Milvia Street.”

  • 20:18
  • 20:24
  • 20:26
    Berkeley Police spokeswoman Jennifer Coats has said the injuries sustained by the surviving victims of the balcony collapse on Tuesday morning were “very serious and potentially life-threatening".
  • 20:40

    'It was kind of like the building was falling down'

    The New York Times has spoken to a resident of Library Gardens, Silvia Biswas (39), who said she lived on the third floor, one floor below the balcony that collapsed.

    She described the apartment building as a mix of working adults with families and college-age people who tend to move in and out quickly.

    Ms Biswas said she could hear an especially raucous party on the balcony above on Monday night. At one point, she said, it sounded as if fireworks were being shot off.

    “When the balcony was falling down we thought it was an earthquake, and a really big earthquake,” she said. “It was shaking my window. It was kind of like the building was falling down.”

    Ms Biswas said she yelled out the window when she saw that people had fallen to the street. When she dialed 911, she was told help was already on the way.

  • 20:42
  • 21:02
    BREAKING NEWS: Irish students Niccolai Schuster and Eoghan Culligan confirmed among six dead after a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California on Tuesday morning.
  • 21:09

    BREAKING:

    It has emerged that two of the dead, Niccolai Schuster and Eoghan Culligan, were former pupils of St Mary’s College in Rathmines, Dublin.


    Most of the dead were 20 or 21, and several were from south Dublin. UCD said it understood a number of its students may have been among the victims.

    The victims, who had travelled to the United States on J-1 summer visas, fell from the fourth floor of an apartment building when the balcony gave way at 12.40am on Tuesday.

    Four died at the scene and two others were pronounced dead at a local hospital, police said.

    Berkeley police spokeswoman Jennifer Coats said the survivors’ injuries were “very serious and potentially life-threatening.”

     

  • 21:16
    You can watch Berkeley officials giving a live press conference on the balcony collapse here.
  • 21:19
  • 21:21
    Deceased currently being named at press conference in Berkeley.  
  • 21:25
    Philip Grant, consul general for the Republic of Ireland in San Francisco, has said the first family members of the deceased and injured in this morning's balcony collapse in Berkeley are due to arrive in California this evening.  
  • 21:26
    "We have around 700 Irish students in the bay area at the moment and there are very few who would not know someone who was at that party" - Philip Grant  
  • 21:28
    "There are questions that we would like to know the answers to but at the moment we’re concentrating on finding out how everybody is." - Philip Grant  
  • 21:33

    The victims of Tuesday morning's balcony collapse in Berkeley, California have been named as follows:  

    Niccolai Schuster (21)

    Eoghan Culligan (21)

    Eimear Walsh (21)

    Olivia Burke (21)

    Ashley Donohoe (22)

    Lorcan Miller (21)  

  • 21:36
  • 21:39
  • 21:41
    “Ireland is a very small place. There isn’t a family in Ireland who haven’t come over on the J1 programme” – Philip Grant, Irish Consul General in San Francisco  
  • 21:44
  • 21:48

    Ashley Donohoe (22) was an Irish-American from Santa Rosa in the Bay Area. She and Olivia Burke (21) were cousins.

  • 21:49
  • 21:58
  • 22:18

    University College Dublin has opened a Book of Condolence for the six students who died in Berkeley on Tuesday after a balcony collapsed.

    Staff and students have been invited to leave their name and short message in memory of those who lost their lives and in support of those injured in the incident.

  • 22:20
  • 22:34
    Six Irish students have been confirmed dead in Berkeley California. They are (clockwise from top left): Eimear Walsh (21), Olivia Burke (21), Ashley Donohoe (22), Eoghan Culligan (21), Niccolai Schuster (21) and   Lorcan Miller (21)     
    Six Irish students have been confirmed dead in Berkeley California. They are (clockwise from top left): Eimear Walsh (21), Olivia Burke (21), Ashley Donohoe (22), Eoghan Culligan (21), Niccolai Schuster (21) and  Lorcan Miller (21)    
  • 22:39

    St Mary’s College in Rathmines has released a statement on the school’s website after it was announced that past pupils Niccolai Schuster and Eoghan Culligan died after a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California.

    “The thoughts and prayers of everybody in the St Mary’s Community are with the families of Niccolai and Eoghan, as well as the other Irish youngsters named by the US authorities this evening. We also pray particularly for those injured, and their families.”

  • 22:43

    University College Dublin president Andrew Deeks has issued a statement on behalf of the university, expressing “heartbreak” at the news of student loss and injury in Berkeley, California.

    “It is with deepest sadness that I speak of the tragic accident involving UCD students and their friends in San Francisco.

    On behalf of the entire University community, I wish to extend our condolences to the families and friends of those who died and to those who were injured. We cannot comprehend the desperate shock and grief they are feeling and we are heartbroken at their suffering and loss.

    We are opening an online book of condolences on our website where students and others are invited to share their sympathies. We have also made our counselling and student support services available to students in San Francisco and in Dublin...

    We have been in touch with colleagues in University of California Berkeley and they have offered to place their counselling services at the disposal of the Irish students in the area...

    Our students, like thousands of others across Ireland, head to the US each summer on J1 visas to enjoy the experience. It is heart-breaking to imagine that such a tragedy would strike these wonderful students when their lives are opening up to discover the world.”

  • 22:53
  • 22:56
  • 22:58
    Correction on earlier post - Taoiseach Enda Kenny will update the Dáil in the morning, and it is understood arrangements for the business of the House may be reviewed. A number of TDs have called for the tragedy to be marked in some way.
  • 23:10

    Councillors from Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council have paid their respects to the young students who died in Berkeley, California by observing a minutes silence at the beginning of their meeting in County Hall.

    Local Councillor Victor Boyhan said; “Our thoughts and prayers are with the deceased and their families and those who are have suffered potentially life-threatening injuries as a result of this tragedy.”

    A book of condolence will be opened in Dún Laoghaire County Hall on Wednesday.

  • 23:18
  • 23:21
  • 23:29
  • 23:37

    We’re finishing up the live blog coverage of the balcony collapse in Berkeley for tonight. Coverage will continue from 6am on Wednesday morning and you can follow our Washington correspondent Simon Carswell - @SiCarswell – who will be reporting from Berkeley.

    The Irish Times  extends its condolences to the families of the victims in Berkeley, California and sends its best wishes to those injured in the incident.