Boylan expresses shock at road safety statistics

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info@newrytimes.com
Tuesday, November 18th, 2014
Community, Politics
Sinn Féin road safety spokesperson Cathal Boylan MLA has said that the PSNI’s current year to date road fatality statistics make for shocking reading. The current figure by 17th November this year stood at 71, an almost 100% increase on the number for the same period in 2012 (36)and over 33% higher than for the same period last year (52). Boylan, MLA for Newry and Armagh, stated, “Behind these numbers lies the pain and heartache of many many people, families and communities who have lost loved ones on our roads this year. “The scale of this tragedy, for a comparatively small region by population, is extremely alarming. Of huge concern is the dramatic increase in the number of road fatalities over these past few years with nearly double the amount than for the same period two years ago. “We must as policy makers and legislators look closely at these trends and try to get a full understanding of why this has occurred and more importantly what we can do to try and improve the safety of our road network.” He continued, “These numbers tell of a startling loss of life and demand of us as a society to try and address road safety issues. Education on road safety must continue to be a priority. “Whilst it’s not something that is comfortable to dwell on, motorists must be mindful of the dangers on the roads and be conscious to drive in a fashion that reduces the likelihood of putting themselves or others in harm’s way. “Reducing speed and avoiding distractions such as mobile phones and radio tuning are among the suggestions he lists as being effective means to safer driving. “All road users have a responsibility to be as careful and vigilant to danger as possible. Together we must work hard to reverse this upward trend. Investment in road improvement schemes and initiatives to raise public awareness must also feature as part of a comprehensive rethink on how we manage this issue. Boylan added, “In the run up to the holiday season in particular I would call for increased care. Dark evenings and bad weather makes for even more difficult conditions and we have already witnessed far too much tragedy.”

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