Stop speeding and leave the mobile alone


The PSNI is launching a summer roads safety message with an appeal to motorists to stop speeding and leave their mobile phones alone.

The campaign is aimed at reducing road deaths. So far this year 43 people have died as a result of road traffic accidents - nine more than last year.

As part of a series of summer road safety operations, the public are being warned to stop speeding, pay greater attention to the road and their surroundings and to leave their mobile phone alone, whether driving, cycling or even crossing the road.

Head of Road Policing, Superintendent Gerry Murray said: “Last weekend we detected two people travelling at over 110mph. To be blunt, the people detected travelling at these speeds are simply idiotic. Thankfully, they can look forward to a day in court, where they are likely to receive a fine and lose their license.

“Receiving a driving ban could have a catastrophic impact on their life, affecting their job or even put them in jeopardy of losing their home, but it is nothing compared to the catastrophic impact of someone losing their life.

“To date this year, 43 people have been killed on our roads, nine more compared to the same time last year. When you consider that many, if not the majority of these deaths caused by collisions could have been avoided, it’s an appalling waste of life.

“Inattention and speed, or more accurately, excessive speed for the conditions and drink or drug driving, are consistently the principal causes of the most serious road traffic collisions in which people are killed or seriously injured on roads across Northern Ireland.

“Over the coming months, we will have additional police resources on the roads across Northern Ireland. In addition, we met with our An Garda Síochána Traffic Corps colleagues earlier this week, to ensure that we will have a coordinated operational approach in the border counties, specifically looking for vulnerable road users and those taking unnecessary and potentially life-changing risks.

“With many school children and young people enjoying the holidays, road users should also keep an eye out for increased numbers of children using or crossing roads, particularly close to parks and leisure amenities, in addition to junctions and bus stops.

“Pedestrians must pay attention to their environment, whether that means not getting distracted by friends or mobile devices, or being especially careful when walking on country roads by walking against the traffic flow or by wearing highly visible clothing.

“With the better weather we are also particularly mindful of more motorcyclists taking to the roads, so we’re encouraging Bikers to ensure their motorcycles and safety equipment are in good working order, that they ride defensively and that if they haven’t already done so, consider booking an assessment session on our Bikesafe programme. In addition, all road users need to be conscious of greater numbers of motorcyclists using the road network.

“On a personal note, as a keen cyclist, I’ve witnessed some cyclists taking unnecessary risks. Cyclists need to remember they are amongst the most vulnerable road users, so must ensure they’re wearing a helmet, using front and rear lights and not listening to music players. At the same time, I’ve witnessed some drivers who have narrowly avoided injuring cyclists by driving too close, or through frustration, attempted downright dangerous overtaking manoeuvres putting themselves and others at huge risk.

“Police make no excuse for robustly enforcing the law to make Northern Ireland’s roads safer, and that’s exactly what we will be doing in the months ahead, but our role is very much secondary. All road users must share the responsibility to prevent deaths and injuries on our roads.

“All we ask is that drivers slow down, do not drive after drinking or taking drugs, wear a seatbelt, drive with greater care and attention and don’t use mobile phones while driving,” Superintendent Murray concluded.