MOTORISTS in Kildare have been warned that An Garda Síochána is carrying out a month of action between 1 and 29 February, focusing on improving road safety.
Last year saw a 4% increase in road traffic fatalities across the country with 148 deaths on the road. Gardaí say that the trend for 2020 is ‘continuing in the same vein’ and that serious injury collisions are ‘up 1% at 1,136’.
While the month of action will target all road traffic offences, particular emphasis will be placed on enforcing key ‘lifesaver’ offences: using mobile phones while driving, not wearing seatbelts (front and back), speeding, driving while intoxicated, and dangerous driving.
Additional speed checks will be conducted during February, coinciding with the rollout of two new types of speed detection devices – the TruCAMII (50 units) and the TruSpeed SXB (120 units). Training in this new equipment will be completed by all Roads Policing members this month and gardaí say that this new technology will make the roads safer.
“The new equipment enhances our ability to conduct speed enforcement checks over a 24 hour period,” said Superintendent Eddie Golden.
Alongside multi-agency checkpoints (conducted with the Road Safety Authority and other external agencies), and checks on trucks and buses with PSV inspectors, Operation Thor checkpoints will take place daily within each Garda division as part of efforts to deny criminals the use of the road network. The checkpoints will be carried out by Roads Policing, Detective and Armed Support units.
Cyclists, as vulnerable road users, will also be a focus throughout February. Roads Policing units and community gardaí will ensure that areas where cycle lanes are provided are regularly patrolled and, where vehicles are obstructing these lanes, ‘appropriate’ action will be taken. Reported incidents of dangerous overtaking of a pedal cycle, they say, will be fully investigated.
Gardaí have also reminded cyclists of the fixed charge notice offences that apply to them on a public road. These include driving a pedal cycle without reasonable consideration, proceeding past traffic lights when they’re red, no front or rear lamp lit during lighting-up hours, or proceeding into a pedestrianised street or area.
Roads Policing members will also be using their new mobility devices to check and identify disqualified drivers.