Gardaí holding National Slow Down Day

Longford Leader Reporter

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Gardaí holding National Slow Down Day

National Slow Down day on October 19-20

An Garda Síochána will conduct a national speed enforcement operation "Slow Down”, supported by the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and other stakeholders, for a 24 hour period from 7am on Friday, October 19 to 7am on Saturday, October 20.

The objective is to reduce the number of speed-related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads. 

The aim of "Slow Down day” is to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding, increase compliance with speed limits and act as a deterrent to driving at excessive or inappropriate speed.

In terms of road safety, 2017 was the lowest on record with 157 road deaths, however it is still 157 road deaths too many. We can never be complacent about road safety. Excessive and inappropriate speed is a major contributory factor in road traffic collisions, further confirmed by the recent RSA report on fatal collisions between 2008 and 2012 which found that excessive speed was a contributory factor in one third of all fatal collisions during that time. 

From January 1 to August 31 there have been 85,457 speeding detections.

The higher the speed, the greater the likelihood is of a collision happening and the more severe the outcome of that collision. As a general rule a 1% reduction in average speed will bring about a 4% reduction in fatal collisions, and this is why reducing motorists’ speed is essential to improving road safety.

Chief Superintendent Finbarr Murphy, Roads Policing Bureau said:- "National Slow Down day is about making our roads and our communities safer. When someone decides to speed they put members of their community at risk, including children, older people, cyclists and other motorists. Nobody has the right to do that. We have been running the "Slow Down” safety initiative since 2012 and every time the vast majority of drivers support it by sticking to the speed limit so firstly, I would like to thank all drivers who help us keep the roads safe. Unfortunately, there are still hundreds who do not, and travel in excess of the speed limit – some significantly so.

"We cannot emphasise enough how much risk this is causing to themselves and others. Each one of these speeding incidents could potentially cause a serious or even fatal road traffic collision. Please do the right thing and stick to all posted speed limits, not just on Slow Down day, but every day and if conditions dictate, reduce speed even further.

"There is a massive amount of advance notice via print, broadcast and social media for safety initiatives such as this. There are drivers who see and hear this but choose not to drive safely. Please don’t be one of the drivers detected speeding on Slow Down day or any other day, and choose to keep yourself and others safe on the road.”

Government Departments, Local Authorities, Public and private sector fleet operators have been invited to participate in the initiative by circulating employees with the key message to "Slow Down” and, whether driving for business or private purposes, to always drive within the speed limit and at a speed appropriate to the prevailing conditions.