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2009 News

A resource for journalists providing up-to-date press releases, images and contact details for our press room

06 October 2009

National Drive to save lives launched as part of Road Safety Week

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has appealed to road users to get involved in a national drive to save lives on our roads, as it revealed that 70 lives are likely to be lost between now and the end of the year. The plea was made today, Tuesday 6th October, at the launch of ‘Irish Road Safety Week 2009’ which runs from Monday 12th to Sunday 18th October.

182 people have died on Irish roads so far this year, a reduction of 40 on last year’s figures. However, it is more than likely that another 70 people could die on Irish roads before the end of the year.

Commenting on ‘Irish Road Safety Week’, Mr Noel Dempsey, T.D., Minister for Transport said:

 “I am saddened at the prospect of a further 70 lives being lost between today and New Year’s Eve and would urge everyone to support the national road safety effort.  From Monday 12th October, there will be a week of activity across the country to raise awareness of the importance of staying safe on the roads. I would also urge you to think about what you can do as an individual to get involved and to put into practice the campaign slogan – Live by the rules of the road.”

Provisional figures for road casualties to date this year show that;

  • Over half (96) of all road deaths to date were drivers. The next group most at risk were pedestrians with 28 deaths so far in 2009;
  • May was the worst month for road deaths so far this year with 30 fatalities; September had the lowest number of road deaths with 13;
  • Male road deaths were over four times as frequent as female road deaths with 147 and 35 respectively to date in 2009; 
  • The highest risk time of the week for road deaths is Sunday between 2am and 4am.

Mr Gay Byrne, Chairman, Road Safety Authority said

“While 13 people tragically lost their lives on the roads in September it was the safest month on our roads since records began. Clearly this demonstrates that the majority of people in this country are getting the message when it comes to road safety and for this we thank you.” He added that

“Irish Road Safety Week’ is an opportunity for everyone to think about their own behaviour on the road and how it affects others. So we are asking you today to think about your parents, brothers and sisters and your children and ask yourself this – what can I do to make the roads safer for my family? A little change will make a big difference”.

Road safety activities are planned across the country throughout the week, beginning on Monday 12th October with an ETSC lecture in Dublin Castle. The lecture, themed ‘Alcohol and Driving’ will look at the success of research-based transport policy-making in other EU countries. This lecture will be followed by the following activity:

  • ‘Leading Lights in Road Safety’ Awards on October 14th in Farmleigh which honour the efforts of individuals and groups to promote road safety at national and community level;
  • Launch of 'Protecting our Community, A Call to Action', on Wednesday 14th October. The community road safety programme is an awareness programme on road safety for adults which is made up of a resource pack and accompanying DVD;
  • ‘European Night Without Accident’ on Saturday 17th October; This will be the third year that Ireland will participate in this initiative which is happening in 14 European countries in 2008. The initiative is run by young adult volunteers who encourage groups of youngsters entering night-clubs to identify a ‘designated driver’ for the night;
  • Free 5-point check for your car with Advance Pitstop, in association with the RSA. Advance Pitstop are offering motorists a ‘health check’ for their car including tyres, brakes, shocks, lights/levels and wipers.
  • The RSA will also be offering a free High Visibility Jacket to anyone over 65 years of age. The jackets are available in local pharmacies nationwide. This campaign is in conjunction with Age Action Ireland, United Drug and the Pharmacy Union of Ireland

To support the activity at local level, the RSA is also running a radio advertising campaign on both national and local radio in the run up to and during ‘Irish Road Safety Week’. A campaign poster has also been developed and will be distributed around the country.

For further information on ‘Irish Road Safety Week’, visit the Road Safety Authority website at www.rsa.ie.


For further information, please contact:

  • Press Office: 096 25008
  • Communications Manager, Brian Farrell: 086 388 1009

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Media & Communications
Moy Valley Business Park
Primrose Hill
Ballina
Co. Mayo
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  • 096 25008