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National slow down day commences

Today, An Garda Síochána commenced with a national speed enforcement operation “Slow Down”, supported by the Road Safety Authority (RSA) for a 24 hour period from 07.00hrs on Monday 4th September to 07.00hrs on Tuesday 5th September 2023.

There have been 127 deaths on Irish roads to date in 2023. That is 23 more than the same period in 2022, and 38 more than the same period in 2019.

One in three (43) of all deaths (to date in 2023) on Irish roads were younger persons under the age 25. Approximately one in four (29) of all deaths (to date in 2023) on Irish roads were pedestrians.

Approximately one in four (30) of all deaths (to date in 2023) on Irish roads were passengers in vehicles. And one in five (25) of all deaths (to date in 2023) took place during in the month of August.

An Garda Síochána carries out a number of high profile ‘Slow Down’ days each year, in support of daily speed enforcement operations.

The aim of “Slow Down day” is to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding, to increase compliance with speed limits and act as a deterrent to driving at excessive or inappropriate speed.

Operation ‘Slow Down’ on Monday, 4th September was picked to coincide with the full return of all schools and the related increase in roads users, particularly vulnerable road users, pedestrians, pedal cyclists and specifically younger road users.

Operation ‘Slow Down’ will consist of high visibility speed enforcement by GoSafe at selected Safety Camera Zones (1373 locations nationally) and at other locations by An Garda Síochána.

In October 2022 the Fixed Charge Notice fine for Speeding increased to €160. A Fixed charge Notice for speeding also incurs 3 penalty points.

A driver that receives 12 penalty points in any 3 year period is automatically disqualified from driving for 6 months. In respect of Learner permit drivers and Novice drivers this disqualification automatically applies if they accumulate 7 penalty points.

With the alarming increase in the number of road fatalities on Irish roads this year, and in recent months, Operation ‘Slow Down’ has taken on increased urgency and relevance.

An Garda Síochána is appealing to all drivers to support Operation ‘Slow Down’ this Monday 4th September, whether using your vehicle for a personal journey, commuting to work or driving for work. Every Driver can play their part.

The World Health Organisation (2017) estimated that a 5% reduction in average speed could result in a 30% reduction in fatal collisions, and therefore reducing every motorists’ speed is essential to improving safety on our roads.

An Garda Síochána and its road safety partners Go-Safe have detected over 105,000 drivers (to end August 2023) driving in excess of the posted speed limit.

However inappropriate speed, driving within the speed limit but at a speed inappropriate for the prevailing traffic, road, weather and vehicle conditions is also a significant factor in road traffic collisions.

The greater the speed, even within posted speed limits, the greater the likelihood is of a collision happening and the bigger the impact and severe the outcome for those involved in a road traffic collision.

A pedestrian or cyclist involved in a Road Traffic Collision with a vehicle travelling at 50 km/h has a 50% chance of living – A pedestrian or cyclist involved in a Road Traffic Collision with a vehicle travelling at 60 km/h has only a 10% chance of living.