Manpower, equipment and visibility are essential to driving home safety message
Spokesperson on Transport Timmy Dooley has said he is extremely concerned about the Government’s response to legitimate concerns in the Road Safety Authority about the impact garda cuts are having on road safety.
Deputy Dooley commented: “Minister Leo Varadkar is failing to deliver the necessary resources for the Road Traffic Corps and is merely paying lip service to the concerns expressed by the RSA Chairman Gay Byrne. Mr. Byrne has raised very serious and legitimate concerns about the link between more and more cuts to garda resources and an increase in the number of deaths on the roads this year. He is right to raise these issues.
“We have years of evidence now that prove that a strong visible garda presence, the appropriate manpower and the necessary equipment saves lives. But we have seen a sustained reduction in resources being allocated to the Traffic Corps and the Gardaí on the frontline can only do so much. The issue of resources should never be a barrier to saving lives on our roads.
“It is clear that there is not enough joined-up thinking or co-operation between Minister Varadkar and Justice Minister Alan Shatter. Both Ministers need to engage fully with the Road Safety Authority and address their concerns in a proactive manner. Gay Byrne, together with Noel Brett the former Chief Executive of the RSA, has led significant change in the area of road safety in recent years. However the reality is the enormous progress that has been achieved could quickly be undone if resources are not put in place to increase Garda presence and visibility and reduce the potential for complacency on the part of road users.”