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  • Southside

Crowds turn out for road safety meeting in Kilmacud

Thursday, 8th March, 2018 6:00pm
Crowds turn out for road safety meeting in Kilmacud

Minister Shane Ross addresses the public meeting in Kilmacud.

Crowds turn out for road safety meeting in Kilmacud

Minister Shane Ross addresses the public meeting in Kilmacud.

A WELL-attended public meeting in Kilmacud last week heard from a range of speakers on the issue of road safety.

Chaired by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross, the road safety public meeting featured Donna Price, founder member of the Irish Road Victims Association (IRVA), Brian Farrell of the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and Dr Mike McKillen, cycling advocate, who also spoke and later took part in a passionate Q&A session.

 “Road safety is about saving lives - nothing else. If we can reduce the number of tragedies on our roads, then we should grasp that opportunity with both hands,” Minister Ross told the crowd as he welcomed them to the meeting and introduced the speakers.

Conor Faughnan of the AA pressed home the fact that our road safety data is based on science and “not invented”.

“The figures are accurate and lives will be saved if the current legislation is passed, despite some “very loud voices protesting against it,” he said.

 “You have to win the moral argument,” he urged.

The legislation in question is the Road Safety (Amendment) Bill 2017 which Minister Ross is currently putting through the Houses of the Oireachtas.

Minister Ross said the legislation will ensure that motorists who are caught driving over the limit will receive a mandatory ban instead of the current fine and penalty points.

 Donna Price told the audience what it is like to lose a loved one in a road traffic accident that was not their fault.

In 2006 her 18-year-old son, Darren, was killed on his way to college, when his car was hit by an articulated lorry.

After such a loss, she felt compelled to “try to do something about it, to prevent our pain from being visited upon other families”.

“What we try to do is put a human face to the road fatality figures,” she added.

 IRVA has held several vigils outside Leinster House with photos in frames of the many people who have lost their lives in preventable road collisions.

The purpose, they say, is to show public representatives and the passing public what the lives lost means.

“Because numbers mean nothing to people,” Ms Price said. “But when they see the actual human being in the photo that has a devastating effect”.

Dr McKillen raised the issue of greater safety for cyclists while Brian Farrell was able to inform attendees of current and forthcoming road safety campaigns.

The meeting was the first in a series that Minister Ross intends to hold nationwide in order to explain his plans for road safety legislation and to listen to the concerns of the travelling public.

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here