Man, 41, killed in suspected hit-and-run
TRAGEDY struck in Wicklow in the early hours of Christmas morning as a 41-year-old male pedestrian was killed after he was struck by a car in a suspected hit-and-run.
The accident happened at 1.20am on the N11 at Coyne's Cross, near Ashford, and the road was closed for several hours as a result, causing traffic to be diverted onto treacherous secondary roads.
The man was walking home in sub-zero conditions with poor visibility on the main road when he was struck by a van which did not stop.
The driver of a black Fiat Diablo van is said to have made the incident known to gardai a short time later, who immediately made their way to the scene and came across a body with all the signs of a violent collision. Alcohol was not a factor in the collision, it has been confirmed.
A 21-year-old man was later arrested under road traffic legislation and brought to Gorey garda station but was subsequently released.
It is expected that the driver will make a full statement to the gardai, either directly or through his solicitor and a file will then be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecution. Gardai have appealed for witnesses who may have seen the man walking on the road or witnessed the incident to contact Bray Garda Station on 01-6665300. The investigation into the death is being led by Supt Michael Lernihan.
The south-bound section of the N11 remained closed until after one o'clock yesterday. Diversions forced motorists on the main Dublin to Wexford road along the Newcastle to Rathnew secondary route until the main road reopened. Wicklow County Council said that gritting of the road took place to facilitate the increased traffic. A technical examination of the scene was carried out and an initial pathology examination took place at the scene before the body was removed to hospital. A full post-mortem is to take place possibly as early as today or tomorrow.
The deceased man, whose name has not yet been released, was the 209th person killed on Irish roads so far in 2010, and the 44th pedestrian to lose their life.
Garda statistics show that of the 209 killed on the roads, 91 of them were driving vehicles at the time of their death, 52 were passengers, 44 were pedestrians, 16 were motorcyclists, five were pedal cyclists and one was a motorcyclist pillion passenger. Gardai have once again appealed to drivers to take care while driving as conditions are to remain treacherous throughout today and tomorrow as the thaw kicks in. Assistant Commissioner John Twomey re-iterated the Garda Safety Message for the current weather: Avoid unnecessary journeys; it takes longer to stop a vehicle on icy roads so slow down and allow extra distance between you and the vehicle in front; manoeuvre gently, avoid harsh braking and acceleration; clear your windows and mirrors before you set out and carry a screen scraper and de-icer; do not use hot water on the windscreen as it can crack the glass; remove all snow from your vehicle before commencing your journey. Snow left on the roof will become loose and can drop onto the windscreen when braking.