Student speed-gun survey should be lesson for us all
IT may have been a Transition Year project but it found and highlighted what most of us fear and know: People speed near schools, even though they are warned by flashing lights and plenty of signs.
The reality is that if the survey conducted by 17 transition-year pupils from Drimnagh Castle Secondary School, Dublin, were translated onto a national canvas it would mean three-in-five drivers are breaking special speed limits near schools.
Of the 200 drivers monitored by the pupils, 58pc drove faster than the 30kmh limit. One drove at 62kmh but more women drivers (55pc) broke the limit.
The students used a number of hi-tech speed guns to log details of the cars and driver gender.
The project was backed by Continental Tyres Ireland and was assisted by laser speed-gun experts Laser Technology, who provide speed-gun technologies to the likes of the Garda, PSNI, Irish Army, Dublin Airport Authority and Irish Rail.
Tom Dennigan, of Continental Tyres, said the environs of a school pose extra risks. "When you add speeding to this, it is a lethal cocktail. To avoid a student being seriously injured or worse, we would plead with drivers to slow down when driving near any school."
The school's transition year coordinator Fergal Kelleher said they were disturbed by the findings.
Transition Year student Aaron Crowe said: "I know that students as pedestrians and/or cyclists are perhaps not the best behaved road users.
"At times, we do tend to dash across the road. In light of this, we feel that drivers really need to slow down when they are driving near a school.
"As part of our road safety module in Transition Year, this was a valuable exercise for us."