An Garda Síochána will conduct a national speed enforcement operation "Slow Down”, supported by the Road Safety Authority and other stakeholders, for a 24 hour period from 7am tomorrow, Friday, October 20 to 7am on Saturday, October 21.
The objective is to reduce the number of speed related collisions, save lives and reduce injuries on our roads. The aim of "Slow Down day” 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.
In terms of road safety, there was a marked increase in road deaths in 2016, resulting in 187 road deaths. Although there have been fewer road deaths this year compared to the same period in 2016, we can never be complacent about road safety. 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.
Chief Superintendent Finbarr Murphy, Roads Policing Bureau said:- "We appeal to drivers to work with us and play their part in reducing injury and tragedy on the road, by supporting our National Slow Down day. Please stick strictly to the posted speed limit, but if the road, traffic or especially weather conditions dictate...reduce your speed even further. This will make the journey safer not only for you, but for every road user sharing the road with you.”
The operation will consist of high visibility speed enforcement in speed enforcement zones, which now number over 1,000, as well as the delivery of a road safety message through the use of national, local and social media. In addition, Garda personnel will man display stands in key venues to provide road safety advice and distribute road safety leaflets.
Government Departments, Local Authorities, Public and private sector fleet operators have been invited to participate in the initiative by circulating employees with the key message to "Slow Down” and, whether driving for business or private purposes, to always drive within the speed limit and at a speed appropriate to the prevailing conditions.