Donegal’s road safety officer Brian O’Donnell has appealed to motorists across the county to monitor their driving to coincide with National Slow Down Day, which takes places tomorrow, Friday May 27th.
This event will take place from 7am Friday 27th – 7am Saturday 28th May 2016.
Although in 2015 the number of road deaths was 166, 27 less than 2015, motorists driving at excessive and inappropriate speed are still major contributory factors in road traffic collisions.
To date in 2016, 70 people have lost their lives on our roads, an increase of 13 on the same period last year. Far too many people are losing their lives on our roads and it is essential that motorists reduce their speed to improve road safety.
According to a report published by the RSA, 322 people died as a result of a collision where excessive speed was cited as a main contributory factor from 2008-2012. Of these, 158 were drivers, 49 motorcyclists, 100 passengers, 2 cyclists and 13 pedestrians.
The statistics were compiled by analysis of forensic collision investigation reports by An Garda Siochána as an attempt to determine the main factors which contribute to road traffic deaths.
The forensic collision reports of 867 fatal collisions probed by the RSA showed that excessive speed for the road and conditions was a main contributory factor in 274 fatal collisions, claiming the lives of 322 people. A further 74 people were seriously injured in the accidents. Unfortunately at the top of the list with the highest incidence of deaths as a result of speeding was Donegal (8.4%).
Brian O’Donnell, Road Safety Officer has urged motorists to support national slow down day.
“We all have places we need to go, but it’s never the right decision to put ourselves, our families and others in harm’s way to get there faster. We need to remind motorists, as the busy summer season approaches, to obey speed limits, reduce speed in inclement weather conditions and allow plenty of time to arrive safely.
“The tragedy of all the suffering caused by inappropriate speed is compounded by the fact that so much of it is preventable. Motorists are driving too fast, ignoring the speed limits and making it dangerous and intimidating for people to engage in the most normal activities on our roads, be it driving, cycling or walking.
“I would appeal to all drivers to take a moment to think about the potential effects the risk-taking behaviour may have not just on themselves, but their friends who are with them, on their families at home and on their extended families. It goes without saying that reducing speed is not only for one day, but for every day”.
From 27th May, new speed enforcement zones will come into effect at locations where fatal or injury collisions occurred as a result of inappropriate speed. All road users, in particular motorists, should familiarise themselves with these sections of the road network which are available online at www.garda.ie Slow down, be alert and arrive at your destiny safely.
Number of people killed or injured in collisions where speed was a factor 2008-2012
Fatal Serious Minor
Driver 158 25 61
Motorcyclist 49 4 0
Passenger 100 45 59
Cyclist 2 0 0
Pedestrian 13 0 0
Total 322 74 120