Tuesday 20 August 2019

Road deaths fall to record low in 2018

But Irish Transport Minister Shane Ross said the figures are ‘not good enough’.

The number of deaths on Ireland’s roads in 2018 was the lowest since records began (PA)
The number of deaths on Ireland’s roads in 2018 was the lowest since records began (PA)

By Rebecca Black, Press Association

The number of road deaths in Ireland in 2018 was the lowest since records began.

A total of 149 people lost their lives in 142 serious crashes across the country in 2018.

This is a drop of 4% from 2017 when 156 lives were lost in 141 fatal road accidents.

It is also the lowest number since road deaths were first recorded in 1959.

Of the 149 fatalities, 63 were drivers, 21 were passengers, 15 were motorcyclists, nine were cyclists, and 41 were pedestrians.

The figures published on Tuesday by the Roads Safety Authority (RSA) were based on provisional Garda reports up to 3pm on December 31 2018.

Transport Minister Shane Ross said that, while the figures have improved, they are “not good enough”.

Transport Minister Shane Ross welcomed the drop in the number of road deaths in Ireland but said it is still not good enough (PA)

“Speed continues to kill,” he said.

“Drink-driving persists and unaccompanied learner drivers continue to break the law.

“Reckless road users cannot be allowed to ruin the lives of innocent others and their families.

“In 2019 the crusade to improve road safety and save lives will accelerate.”

Garda Assistant Commissioner Dave Sheehan thanked motorists who had driven responsibly, saying their behaviour had saved lives.

“However, despite this, there were drivers who refused to get the message and unfortunately learned the hard way,” he said.

“Over 130,000 drivers were detected committing speeding offences, almost 30,000 detected using a mobile while driving, almost 9,000 driving under the influence of an intoxicant, and over 11,000 were detected for seatbelt offences.

“As garda numbers assigned to road policing units in districts around the country increase in 2019, I can guarantee that people will see a greater garda presence on the roads.

“Whether there are any detections for traffic offences is entirely up to road users themselves.”

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