ADVERTISING trailers and vehicles that are parked at junctions and roundabouts are to be targeted in a council clampdown.Â
Described as a distraction to motorists and a danger to road users, the council will target such unauthorised vehicles from Monday, July 17th.
At a recent meeting of County Council, councillors adopted the by-laws âin response to the plethora of vehicle or trailer mounted commercial advertising signs on public roads throughout the county.'
Tom Stritch, director of services in road and transportation said as well as constituting traffic hazards they also impacted negatively on the environment.'
The new by-laws which were Â approved by the Roads and Transportation Special Purposes Committee (SCP) in June, mean the council can affix a notice to an offending vehicle or trailer instructing its immediate removal from a public road. In cases where a vehicle is offered for sale on a public road, the council can contact the owner advising them that a notice is being put on the vehicle, regarding its removal.
If the vehicle is not removed within 24 hours of the notice being posted then the Council will remove it and put into storage for up to six weeks. The owner will then be notified and may claim the vehicle back âon full payment of removal and storage costs.'
Under the by-laws, the council will âreserve the rights to remove any such advertising vehicles immediately and without giving prior notice to the owner, particularly if it is deemed to be a risk to the safety of road users.' If the vehicles or trailers are not claimed within six weeks then the Council can dispose of them in accordance with the 1993 Roads Act.
The by-laws will not apply to signs and posters erected in relation to elections and referenda, provided such signs are removed within seven days of the poll and that they do not endanger public safety by reason of traffic hazard or obstruction of road users.
The public is also invited to do its part in improving road safety and bringing an end to this dangerous practice by contacting the Council's relevant Municipal District Engineering office, with details of any such unauthorised vehicles or trailers that may come to the attention of the general public.
Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) said: âThe sale of cars has died out on the public roads but there are some vehicles being sold on private land.'
County Mayor Cllr Declan Hurley said that the council would look into this issue.
Cllr John Paul O' Shea (Ind) pointed out that the 24 hour's notice to remove a vehicle was a bit short and he also questioned the cost of removing and storing the items.
Council chief executive Tim Lucey said the costs of removing and storing would vary from place to place and would be determined by the area engineers in each area.
Cllr Marcia D'Alton (Ind) asked about who would be responsible for the implementation of the by-laws and pointed out that one junction in her area featured eight advertising boards.