Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Transport, Tourism and Sport

Road Safety Strategy: Discussion

9:00 am

Photo of Imelda MunsterImelda Munster (Louth, Sinn Fein) | Oireachtas source

The road safety television advertisement over the Christmas period was remarkably effective. The witness made reference to it earlier when he said that it is effective when one has the combined traffic corps resources behind the campaign. We know that drink driving is a major factor in road accidents and fatalities, but one wonders if the message has gotten through. That particular campaign was very effective, but the figures for this year, January to now, are exactly the same as last year. It must be very frustrating for the Road Safety Authority to come up with the highlighting and awareness campaigns and to not have the resources to enforce it. Therein lays the proof that for the five weeks of this year we are exactly the same as we were last year. Perhaps the witnesses could offer their opinion on the lack of enforcement procedures, and the common knowledge out there that there is no enforcement, which means that no matter what the campaign is the likelihood of being stopped are next to none.

One of the most dangerous two hour periods is 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. With regard to the Road Safety Authority's ongoing education programme in getting the message through to primary schools, second level school and colleges, does the RSA especially target colleges? School-going children, particularly teenagers, are the least likely to don high-visibility vests - for obvious reasons - so would the RSA consider introducing a high-visibility strip for school bags to primary and second level students so they could be seen while walking? The students would be ten times more likely to put the strip onto their schoolbags than put on a high-visibility vest. The RSA could also liaise with the schools to try enforcing this to ensure that every child has a high-visibility strip on his or her schoolbag. We are trying to-----


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