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100 gardai in holiday blitz on drink drivers

GARDAI will target motorists in a massive drink-driving operation in Dublin's city centre tomorrow evening.

More than 100 officers will descend on the city centre with the aim of maximising the number of breathalyser tests.

Gardai will set up 16 'super checkpoints', from 6pm to 10pm with eight inside the canals and the remainder outside.

Motorists have also been warned to slow down -- especially through 50kph zones where the majority of speed checks will be placed.

Chief Superintendent Aidan Reid, head of the Dublin Metropolitan area Traffic Corps, said that people should be wary if they plan to have a drink after work tomorrow.

"On the eve of a Bank Holiday Weekend, workers in the city centre often join colleagues for a social drink and then they head out to the suburbs," he said. "We will be initiating Operation Lockdown on Friday evening which will involve the setting up of 16 super-manned checkpoints in and around the city centre.

"For the remainder of the weekend we will be focusing on satellite towns where the main concentration of people will be socialising while we also be running a number of checkpoints in the city centre."

Gardai will be using more speed cameras than normal this Bank Holiday weekend especially in 50kph zones.


"Our intelligence gathering also showed that most of the deaths that occurred in Dublin took place in 50kph zones," Chief Supt Reid added.

"We will be setting up checkpoints in areas where motorists are coming off heavy volume routes into 50kph zones.

"We will also be targeting people coming from the city centre who are joining heavy volume routes on their way out.

"We will be focusing on the areas of Blanchardstown, Coolock, Tallaght because of information is pointing towards these areas in terms of danger."

Gardai have asked motorists to pay particular attention to pedestrians and cyclists this weekend.

"The majority of fatalities on Dublin roads are vulnerable road users which include pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists," Chief Supt Reid added.

"Since 2001, 337 people have died on Dublin roads and 61pc of these people were vulnerable road users."

Dublin was the best performing capital city in Europe in terms of fatality reduction last year and the Dublin Traffic Corps is hoping to keep up their record.

"We can't take our foot off the pedal. We in the Dublin traffic corps want to make our contribution to the reduction of road deaths nationally," he said.