AN Garda Síochána will conduct an intensive national speed enforcement operation for a 24-hour period from 07.00 hrs on Friday 27th to 07.00 hrs on Saturday, March 28th. This national ‘Slow Down’ day, is supported by the Road Safety Authority and other stakeholders.
The objective of operation ‘Slow Down’ is to reduce the number of speed-related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads. The aim is to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding, increase compliance with speed limits and act as a deterrent to driving at excessive and inappropriate speed.
Last year saw another increase in road deaths, resulting in 190 fatalities. Excessive and inappropriate speed is a major contributory factor to road traffic collisions.
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.
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.
The operation will consist of high-visibility speed enforcement activities on both national primary and secondary roads. All speed enforcement technologies will be utilised, including all laser handheld speed detection devices, ROBOT vans and Cleartone / Puma in-car speed detection systems. GoSafe vehicles will be deployed on the day in speed enforcement zones which provide maximum visibility.
In addition to enforcement, the Garda website and in particular social media sites will be actively used to promote this initiative.
The public can play their part by both showing support via the Garda Facebook page but also reducing speed. An accompanying poster in both English and Irish is provided to download, print and distribute.
Chief Superintendent Mark Curran of the Garda National Traffic Bureau said: ‘We want to reduce the number of speed related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads. We appeal to drivers to treat the speed limit as the absolute maximum they will travel at or slow down when road, weather or traffic conditions dictate. It sounds a very simple ask – but we also know that approximately 80% of our speeding detections are between 10-29km/h over the posted limit, with nearly half occurring in 50km/h zones.’
The Chief Superintendent continued: ‘Excessive or inappropriate speed causes death and injury on our roads, and remains the primary contributory cause of road traffic collisions. Slowing down keeps you and others around you safe on our roads, and although this is a targeted 24 hour operation, we appeal to drivers to always abide by this advice – slow down, save lives.’