Gardaí will be ‘out in force’ over Christmas

Garda chiefs have vowed to tackle the perennial issue of drink driving over the festive period by increasing the number of mandatory breath tests across the Longford/Roscommon division.

Garda chiefs have vowed to tackle the perennial issue of drink driving over the festive period by increasing the number of mandatory breath tests across the Longford/Roscommon division.

Random testing, together with routine checks on cars suspected of having defective lighting, tyres and steering will also take precedence between now and the new year.

The increased presence of foot as well as mobile patrols forms part of the Gardai’s Christmas Road Safety Campaign.

Inspector Fran Nicholson said the move was intended to cut down on the three road deaths that have so far been reported on Longford roads this year.

“What we are asking people to do is to slow down,” said Insp Nicholson.

“We are not interested in catching people, we just want people to comply with the law.”

Since the road safety campaign’s introduction earlier this month, 25 Longford motorists have been stopped on suspicion of using a mobile phone while driving.

Insp Nicholson also revealed officers had made a number of detections in relation to faulty or defective cars in recent weeks.

Recently introduced legislation likewise meant gardai were in a stronger position to clamp down on those suspected of drug driving.

And he had cautionary words of advice for pedestrians and cyclists when taking to the roads over the holiday season.

“We would be urging them to wear reflective jackets and to walk on the correct side of the road,” he said.