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‘As a family, we’re broken’ – daughter’s road safety plea after death of her father

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Gillian Byrne from Cork who lost her dad to a collision on the August bank holiday weekend in 2019. Pic:Mark Condren

Gillian Byrne from Cork who lost her dad to a collision on the August bank holiday weekend in 2019. Pic:Mark Condren

Gillian Byrne from Cork who lost her dad to a collision on the August bank holiday weekend in 2019. Pic:Mark Condren

With weather warnings in place across the country for the bank holiday weekend, emergency services are braced for a busy few days on the roads.

The August bank holiday weekend is traditionally one of the most treacherous, with four fatalities over the period last year.

Gillian Byrne, of Lower Aghada, in Cork, is appealing for those on the move this weekend to take extra care.

She lost her father, PJ, in a road accident over the August bank holiday weekend in 2019. “The August weekend will never be the same for us,” she said.

“Nor will any other weekend. It’s one of our dreaded times.

“I hope nobody ever has to go through what we did as a family. We’re broken.

“We’re just missing a very special link that we’ll never get back again, and it’s just cruel.”

She made the comments to Irish Independent photographer Mark Condren for a video he has created with help from gardaí to appeal to motorists to take extra care on the roads this year in order to protect families from the pain of a tragic loss.

Gardaí are mounting checkpoints around the country over the weekend.

A report this week from the Road Safety Authority and gardaí found 65 people died on Irish roads in 60 collisions in the six months to July, 12pc fewer deaths and collisions than the same period last year.

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Around 82pc of deaths happen on rural roads with a speed limit of 80kmh or higher.

Mark’s video is available on Independent.ie


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