Gardaí launch national 'Slow Down Day' to encourage road safety

An Garda Síochána are launching their annual ‘Slow Down Day’ tomorrow, May 23.

The 24 hour long events starts at 7am on Friday morning an is intended to “reduce the number of speed related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads.”

‘Slow Down Day’ will aim to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding, increase compliance with speed limits and deter excessive speeding.

Chief Superintendent of the Roads Policing Bureau, Paul Cleary said that he hoped the event will discourage ‘completely unacceptable” speeding on Irish roads.

“The vast majority of drivers drive safely within the speed limits, and it is most welcome, but there still remain those that do not.

“Each time a vehicle speeds excessively or inappropriately, it could result in a serious or fatal collision. Please check your speed and support Slow Down day, not only on the day, but every day.”

“In the first three months of 2019, there has been a 46pc increase in speeding detections compared to the same period in 2018.”

2018 was the lowest year on record for Irish road deaths at 146 fatalities. A recent report by the Road Safety Authority (RSA) found that between 2008 and 2012 excessive speed was a contributory factor in almost one third of all fatal collisions.

“You may not think that you are driving very fast, when in reality it could be life threatening to vulnerable passengers like children or older persons and especially dangerous to pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists,” said Chief Executive of the RSA, Moyagh Murdock.

“If you hit a pedestrian at 60km/h only one in 10 will survive. Hit at 30km/h and the outcome for the pedestrian is greatly improved as nine out of 10 will survive.

“That’s why it is so important to have days like today, to remind drivers that they need to slow down, not only for their own sake, but for the safety of their passengers and vulnerable road users.

“So please, don’t put yourself under pressure to speed, give yourself plenty of time to arrive at your destination by setting out earlier on your journey, and watch out for vulnerable road users.”

As of 22nd May 2019, there have been 58 road fatalities, an increase of two on this date last year.

So far this year the highest speed caught by a Garda speed camera was 208 km/h in a 100 km/h zone in Co. Mayo

Since the start of the year to March 31,  there have been 36,014 speeding detections (a 46pc increase on same period in 2018.)

The penalty for speeding is 3 penalty points and an €80 euro fine if paid within 28 days.

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