A proposal to carry out long planned improvement works on Inis Óirr pier has been approved.

Increased passenger traffic and ongoing safety concerns led to plans for the redevelopment being drawn up over 15 years ago. But due to a delay in progressing these, Galway County Council was asked to update the project costs.

The Minister for Rural Development has now approved the revised business case for the works, clearing the way for local authority to put the project to tender.

The development will help address the danger from waves breaking over the pier. It will also increase space for passenger vessels using the facility.

In 2017, Galway County Council was told to implement enhanced safety measures on the pier, after a gangway came loose from a passenger ferry, causing two people to enter the water.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board said the incident was caused by the vessel drifting off berth, causing the gangway to dip towards the water.

Investigators identified a lack of management in terms of crowd control at the pier, as well as cargo and vehicles causing congestion.