Fianna Fáil TD for Meath East Thomas Byrne has sought a safety and efficiency review of the N2 road in light of recent fatal accidents along the route.

Deputy Byrne raised the issue after securing a special Dáil debate on the issue with Minister for Transport Shane Ross.

“There are growing concerns surrounding the safety of motorists and pedestrians on the N2 road. Six people have lost their lives on the road since the New Year which is totally unprecedented. There are fears that there could be further fatalities in the months ahead if action is not taken to improve road safety along the route,” said Deputy Byrne.

“The road is extremely busy and is easily one of the most treacherous roads in the country. It is my view that a full safety review is urgently required to determine what action needs to be taken to prevent further fatalities. There have also been a huge number of minor accidents along the N2 route that haven’t hit the headlines. It is incumbent on Minister Ross to initiate a review of the safety and efficiency of the road to help improve conditions on the route.

“The Slane by-pass must also be looked at as it is so closely linked to the operation of the N2. I urge Minister Ross to get the by-pass plan back on track without delay. This is critical infrastructure which needs to be developed as quickly as possible. We are now five years on from a negative planning decision, however the by-pass is only now starting to be discussed once again. The residents of Slane are afraid to cross the road in the village even at the pedestrian crossings. Urgent action is needed to prevent further fatalities.

“In terms of efficiency, the N2 is not serving its primary function as a national route. There are massive daily delays particularly from Kilmoon Cross towards Primatestown and Ashbourne. Commuters are understandably frustrated by the delays. Investment is needed to bring the route up to standard.

“We must also consider the concerns of the residents that live along the N2 route and those which live on its side roads. There are many local roads around Garristown and Curragha which are coming under serious pressure due to commuters being forced to avoid lengthy delays along the national route. This is storing up further problems and is a testament to the inefficiency of the N2. The Minister needs to take a ‘whole of road’ approach in order to determine solutions to overcome these problems.”