Crash deaths at 'crisis' point - minister
Published 28/10/2016 | 02:30
Transport Minister Shane Ross said the spate of fatal road accidents is reaching "crisis" point as another man died on the country's roads.
Mr Ross urged people not to be complacent behind the wheel ahead of the Bank Holiday weekend, which is a particularly dangerous time for road accidents.
The warning came just hours after Danny Moloney (19) died when the car he was driving spun out of control and hit a wall at Smith's Road outside Charleville, Co Cork.
Two men and a woman were also injured in the crash at 11pm on Wednesday, and were recovering in hospital.
Mr Moloney became the ninth person to die on the roads in the past four days. Figures show that fatal road accidents are up 25pc on the same period last year.
Mr Ross was speaking at the launch of the October Bank Holiday road safety initiative, with the gardaí and the Road Safety Authority.
"This is very close to a crisis situation now. We cannot be complacent," he said.
"This is a really grim situation, particularly approaching the Bank Holiday weekend which is traditionally a really bad time for road accidents
"I think it's time to ring the alarm bells and say we can't tolerate a situation like this going on any longer.
"We're talking about a 25pc increase on last year, which is absolutely tragic for many, many people and that is continuing throughout the year," he said.
"There's a trend developing which is very worrying indeed."
Mr Ross confirmed that he is also going to bring forward a safety taskforce meeting in a bid to address the alarming spike in road fatalities across Ireland.
Moyagh Murdock, CEO of the RSA, said the usual culprits were still to blame for the carnage on our roads, including drink driving, speeding, using mobile phones while driving, and not wearing seat-belts. But she also said that parents had to step up and not allow young drivers on the road unaccompanied.
Meanwhile, Councillor Ian Doyle extended his condolences to the Moloney family following the fatal accident in Charleville.
"I'd like to extend my deepest sympathies to them on their tragic loss. The whole community is shocked by the tragedy," he said.
Councillor Doyle revealed there had been 17 accidents along the route involved over the past 15 years.
"It most certainly is an accident black-spot," he said.
The council had undertaken works a number of years ago in a bid to enhance the safety levels of the route for motorists.
Mr Moloney was a former student at Charleville CBS and had recently started a third-level training course.
He is survived by his parents, John and Sinead, and his sisters.