Motorists can be encouraged to report other people for dangerous driving as part of the new road safety plan
Nationwide speed limits of 30 km / h could be implemented in all urban areas as part of an ambitious new strategy to reduce road fatalities.
Motorists could also be encouraged to upload images of traffic violations to facilitate prosecution, while ambitious steps will also be taken to reduce the number of learner drivers on the roads in the years to come.
The proposals are part of a series of changes defined as part of a new strategy published by the Road Safety Authority (RSA), which aims to reduce road fatalities by 50% by 2030 and eliminate all road deaths by 2050.
This is the fifth strategy published by the RSA, and road fatalities have already fallen by almost 70% since the first strategy in 1998.
Among the actions included in the strategy are:
- The establishment of a working group to consider the introduction of a speed limit of 30 km / h in all urban areas;
- Explore the potential of an online portal allowing road users to upload images of traffic violations that could facilitate prosecution;
- Revise the penalties for serious traffic offenses, in particular: impaired driving, speeding, cell phone use, not wearing seat belts, transporting unbelted children in a vehicle;
- Legislate for increased penalties for the multiple use of drugs, drugs and alcohol and driving;
- Eliminate the incidence of unaccompanied learner’s licenses. Reduce the number of learner drivers holding a third learner’s license or subsequent learner’s license from 24.6% to a maximum of 10% by 2024.
- Legislate to introduce measures to promote the passing of the driving test by holders of multiple learning permits and consider introducing compulsory driving training for this purpose.
Ireland had the lowest annual number of road fatalities since registrations began and the second lowest road fatality rate in the EU in 2019.
However, serious injury numbers increased during the 2013-2020 strategy, and although there was a 9% reduction in fatalities during this period, RSA’s goal of reducing the number of deaths to 124 per year by 2020 has not been achieved.
Launching the new strategy, Minister of State at the Department for Transport Hildegarde Naughton said just one death “is one too many” as there have been 126 fatalities on Irish roads so far this year .
âThe heart of the strategy isn’t about the words or numbers on a page, it’s about saving lives and preventing injury. It’s about people. This strategy is aimed at all those who use our roads, and who have the right to do so safely, âshe said.
The main objective of the new strategy is to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on Irish roads by 50% over the next 10 years. This means reducing the number of deaths on Irish roads each year from 144 to 72 or less and reducing serious injuries from 1,259 to 630 or less by 2030.
The strategy is the first step towards the government’s ‘Vision Zero’ commitment to eliminate all fatalities and serious injuries on Irish roads by 2050.
The strategy also emphasizes climate goals, encouraging the modal shift of road users to active journeys by committing to making walking and cycling safer for more people.
Commenting on the strategy, Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said: âRoad safety policy does not exist in a vacuum; it must reflect broader societal change and social needs. Concerns about climate change and the need to change our behavior are reflected in the increased growth of active travel across Ireland. We must encourage more people to use sustainable modes of transport, such as cycling, walking and public transport, and this must be supported in our strategic thinking on road safety.
The 2021-2030 road safety strategy will be delivered in three phases, the first of which runs from 2021 to 2024, and is supported by funding of 3.8 billion euros.