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Crowe expresses concern at continuing rise in road carnage

25 August, 2004

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Seán Crowe TD, has today voiced his concern at the spiralling numbers of people killed on our roads in 2004. So far this year, 253 people have died as a result of road accidents in this state - 24 more than at this same period last year.

Deputy Crowe said, "The grim reality is that so far in 2004, 355 people have died on Irish roads. 253 people have been killed on roads in this state, with a further 102 in the Six Counties. The most disturbing element of this is that many of these deaths were preventable.

"In the absence a fundamental shift in our attitudes to speeding and dangerous driving, and in the absence of a visible and dedicated traffic corps, Sinn Féin would question the current deployment of resources used to tackle the problem. The apparent over emphasis in placing speed cameras and patrols on motorways and dual carriageways, which are acknowledged as the safest roads in the country, makes no sense when the majority of accidents are happening on other national and secondary routes throughout the country. That many of these accidents are happening during weekend nights shows where resources are needed. The Minister for Justice needs to make the funds available so that the Gardai can adequately tackle this unaccpetable situation.

"The fact so many young people are involved in these accidents also indicates that we need to address the problem from an educational point of view. All young people before leaving school should be fully versed in the rules of the road from the perspectives of a pedestrian, a cyclist and a motorist and where possible be given practical tuition."

Deputy Crowe went on to say that Sinn Féin was "reiterating our call for the implementation of initiatives throughout Ireland to improve road safety, including the standardising across the island of road safety measures, road signs, speed limits and one points system to cover the whole island." ENDS

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