Gardai Launches Summer Drink Driving Campaign With RSA

Gardai and the Road Safety Authority (RSA) have launched a summer drink driving campaign after new figures revealed Irish road deaths have risen by 15% in 2016.

A total of 86 people have died on the roads this year, with 11 more deaths compared to the same period last year.

With July and August historically among the most dangerous months of the year, the top counties for drinking driving related fatalities include Cork [10.6%], Galway [9.7%], Dublin [7.9%], Donegal [7.6%] and Cavan [5.5%]. Co Cork also accounts for nearly a fifth all road deaths in the country this year [16 deaths].

A report from the National Drug Related Death Index (NDRDI) shows that 32% of drivers who died in 2013 were drink driving, while the RSA's recent Pre-Crash Report on Alcohol found that alcohol was a factor in 38% of all fatal crashes. Of this 38%, a drink driver accounted for 29% of these crashes between 2008 and 2012.

Superintendent Con O'Donohue, Garda National Traffic Bureau, said urgent steps must be taken to reverse the upward trend in road deaths.

"For our part An Garda Síochána is increasing its day to day enforcement activity in July and August," he said.

"Specifically we have added 7 national 24 hour drink driving operations to our operations plan for these months. We are placing a particular emphasis on targeting drink driving late at night over weekends. My colleagues around the country will put additional effort into targeting those counties that have a track record of drink driving related fatalities."

Moyagh Murdock, Chief Executive of the RSA, added: "The RSA will be supporting An Garda Síochána's drink driving enforcement blitz with an awareness effort that includes a radio, online and poster campaign targeting pubs and clubs nationwide.

"Our message, which is particularly aimed at young people, is not to let your summertime turn to tragedy, not to let the local roads you drive become lethal because of stupid, reckless choices you made. Choices that could affect you for the rest of your life if you are involved in a drink driving incident.

"We want people to think of the possible consequences. A drink driving disqualification could affect your employment prospects, you may never be able to travel to the US or face a lifetime of shame from having someone's serious injury or death on your conscience."


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