Garda And RSA To Conduct National 'Slow Down' Operation

A national speed enforcement operation has been announced by An Garda Síochána in association with the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and other stakeholders.

The 'Slow Down' operation will run for a 24-hour period between 7am on Friday, 21 October until 7am on Saturday, 22 October, 2016.

The objective of the operation is to reduce the number of speed related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads. The aim of 'Slow Down' is to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding, increase compliance with speed limits and act as a deterrent to driving at excessive or inappropriate speed.

While road deaths fell in 2015, totalling 162 deaths, the joint lowest on record, that number has increased in 2016. Excessive and inappropriate speed is a major contributory factor in road traffic collisions, further confirmed by the recent RSA report on fatal collisions between 2008 and 2012 which found that excessive speed was a contributory factor in one third of all fatal collisions during that time.

The higher the speed, the greater the likelihood is of a collision happening and the more severe the outcome of that collision. As a general rule a 1% reduction in average speed will bring about a 4% reduction in fatal collisions, and this is why reducing motorists' speed is essential to improving road safety.

The operation will consist of high visibility speed enforcement activities to include all 1,031 speed enforcement zones, as well as the delivery of a road safety message through the use of national, local and social media. All primary schools have been notified of a competition to win a visit by the Garda band by creating their own road safety poster, poem or song. In addition, Garda personnel will man display stands in key venues to provide road safety advice and distribute road safety leaflets.

Chief Superintendent Aidan Reid, Garda National Traffic Bureau said: "There has been a significant increase in road deaths this year compared to 2015, which was the joint safest on record. Excessive or inappropriate speed is a major contributory factor in road crashes. This is not just a catch phrase, this is a stark fact, proven by the analysis of 4 years of fatal collision reports. The higher the speed, the greater the risk and the greater the injury if there is a collision. Please recognise this fact and protect not only yourself, but all other road users sharing the road with you.

"Road safety is not just a job for the Gardaí or the Road Safety Authority, it is everyone's responsibility to act and be safe on our roads. It is every road user's right to be safe and slowing down reduces risk. Please play your part and reduce your speed, not just on Slow Down day, but every day. Every primary school has been invited to take part, by creating a road safety poster, song or poem – with the winning entry's school getting a unique visit from the Garda band. So, with the help of even our youngest road users, the message is, slow down to save lives."


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