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Stay Safe on The Roads This Easter Bank Holiday Weekend

Date: 28-03-2024

Mayo County Council's Road Safety Office is urging all road users to stay safe on the roads around the county during this Easter Bank Holiday weekend.

Acting Road Safety Officer with Mayo County Council, Gary Smyth advises road users that: “Bank Holiday weekends typically witness increased road traffic, with people often in a rush to reach their destinations. Were you aware that nearly 50% of all accidents occur during the weekend?

“The most prevalent factors contributing to this high accident rate include speeding, driver fatigue, distracted driving (particularly texting while driving), driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and injuries resulting from not wearing seat belts.”

So, what steps can you take to reduce the likelihood of being in an accident? Consider the following:

  • Plan Your Trip: Ensure you allocate sufficient time for your journey, avoiding the need for haste.
  • Put Your Mobile Away: Using your mobile while driving increases the risk of an accident fourfold.
  • Perform Basic Car Checks: Check your tires for proper inflation and good condition. With wet weather, expect an increased amount of spray and dirt on your windscreen, so ensure your washer fluid is topped up. Verify that your lights, including indicators, are functioning correctly.
  • Reduce Speed: Slowing down is a straightforward safety measure.
  • Take Breaks: If you're embarking on a long journey, plan pit stops to stretch your legs and enjoy a coffee.

This weekend will also witness a higher presence of Go Safe vans on the road. Keep in mind that fines for several road safety offenses have doubled in recent years. Accumulate 12 points, and you'll be disqualified from driving.

Some of the fines that have doubled include speeding (increasing from €80 to €160), mobile phone use (rising from €60 to €120), not wearing seat belts (also increasing to €120) and failing to ensure that a child is properly restrained (again, increasing to €120).

Additionally, certain fines related to safety offenses committed by learner and novice drivers are on the rise.

For instance, the fine for a learner permit holder driving unaccompanied by a qualified person has increased from €80 to €160, and the fine for novice and learner drivers not displaying 'L' or 'N' plates, or tabards in the case of motorcyclists, has also doubled to €120.

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