2018 News

02 March 2018

Road Safety Alert Update Friday 2 March

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) is advising road users not to make any unnecessary journeys in areas badly affected by the recent snowfall as roads are treacherous, and some impassable in many parts of the country today.

Where travel is absolutely unavoidable road users should check local conditions and traffic reports before considering making any journey.

The RSA continues to advise drivers to:

  • REMOVE ALL SNOW FROM YOUR VEHICLE BEFORE COMMENCING YOUR JOURNEY. Snow left on the roof will become loose and can drop onto the windscreen during braking, thereby causing sudden and severe restriction to your vision. It can also fall off during your drive and cause injury to pedestrians or a reflex action by another driver.
  • Clear windows and mirrors before you set out, use a screen scraper and de-icer. Do not use hot water on the windscreen as it can crack the glass.
  • In snow and icy conditions slow down, use all controls delicately and leave extra distance between you and the vehicle in front. Avoid over steering and harsh braking and harsh acceleration. Use the highest gear possible to avoid wheel spin. Select a low gear when travelling downhill especially if through bends.
  • In heavy snowfall, visibility will be reduced greatly. Do not drive on the tail-lights of the vehicle in front (Target Fixing). This can give a false sense of security and you will be too close to be able to brake safely. In heavy snow, use your fog lights, turn off your radio and open your window a fraction, so you can hear other traffic, especially at junctions.
  • Use dipped headlights at all times, and fog lights in heavy snow to ensure you are seen by other motorists (but don’t forget to turn them off afterwards).
  • Watch out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists and allow extra space.
  • Drivers of high sided vehicles like trucks and buses are particularly at risk from both the dangers posed by snow and ice but also from the high winds.

For a copy of the RSA’s ‘Top 10 tips for driving in snow or icy conditions’ click here.

Pedestrians are advised to:

  • Be seen. Wear bright clothing but ideally wear a high visibility jacket, reflective armband or reflective belt.
  • Wear appropriate footwear. Walk on the footpath, not in the street. Walk on the right hand side of the road, facing traffic if there are no footpaths.
  • DO NOT underestimate the danger of ice. Many slips and falls happen in places people regard as safe and secure, typically outside their front door, on the door step, on the path or while getting out of the car. When you approach a footpath or roadway that appears to be covered with snow or ice, always use extreme caution.
  • Ice can easily hide under a light dusting of snow. Just because you don’t see the ice doesn’t mean it’s not there waiting for your unsuspecting footfalls.
  • Be aware of overhead hazards! Falling icicles and chunks of snow pose a serious risk. Be aware of what’s happening above you, and stay clear from the edges of buildings.

For a copy of the RSA’s ‘Top 10 tips to avoid a fall or slip in snow or icy conditions’ click here.

Cyclists and Motorcyclists are advised:

  • Motorcyclists / Cyclists should not travel in areas affected by snow.

For advice on severe weather driving tips and weather updates, please see severe weather advice on the RSA website or check out the RSA Facebook and Twitter pages.

See advice on driving in ice or snow in our series of severe weather warning videos created in collaboration with Teresa Mannion.

For more weather updates visit Met Eireann’s website www.met.ie

Drivers are advised to carry a number of essentials in their car including.

  • Fully charged mobile phone
  • High visibility vest
  • Appropriate footwear in case you need to leave your vehicle e.g. boots
  • A hazard warning triangle
  • De-icing equipment (for glass and door locks)
  • First aid kit
  • A working torch
  • A blanket, additional clothing & some food and water
  • Shovel



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