safety initiative | 

Motorist caught doing 140kmh in 80kmh zone on National Slow Down Day

Meanwhile, gardaí pulled over a car doing 151kmh on a stretch of the M4 motorway
Stock photo

Stock photo

Paul Hyland

A vehicle was caught doing 140kmh in an 80kmh zone on National Slow Down Day today.

Gardaí have confirmed that the vehicle was detected on the N4 at Doddsborough, Lucan, Dublin.

In the first nine hours of the driver safety initiative today, between 7am and 4pm, gardaí and GoSafe vans checked the speed of 78,911 vehicles and detected 374 vehicles travelling in excess of the applicable speed limit.

A second vehicle was detected travelling 119km/h on another section of the N4 in Lucan.

Meanwhile, gardaí pulled over a car doing 151kmh on a stretch of the M4 motorway.

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A car which was doing 99km/h in a 60km/h zone in Nass, Co Kildare, was also detected.

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National Slow Down Day is a joint initiative organised by An Garda Síochána and the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and it runs until 7am tomorrow morning, Friday.

According to an RSA pilot study on speeding on urban roads, 78pc of drivers observed were found to have driven in excess of the posted speed limit of 50km/h.

The study, which included over 5,000 vehicles observed in October 2021, found that on weekdays 75pc of motorists drove in excess of 50km/h, while at the weekend 93pc of drivers broke the speed limit.

Separately, an analysis of data from 2013-2017 found that a quarter of driver fatalities, with a record of their actions available, were exceeding a safe speed in the lead-up to the fatal collision.

Speaking at the launch of the June Bank Holiday Road Safety Appeal and National Slow Down Day, Minister of State at the Department of Transport Hildegarde Naughton said the number of drivers breaking the 50km/h speed limit is "very concerning”.

"These are speed zones that are rich in pedestrians and cyclists, vulnerable road users. Reducing the risk posed to vulnerable road users in these speed zones and encouraging safer, greener active travel is one of the key priorities of the new Government Road Safety Strategy,” she said.

“For example, we are reviewing speed limits and examining the possibility of a greater roll-out of 30km/h speed zones, as well as conducting a review of penalties related to speeding. New in vehicle safety assist technology such as Intelligent Speed Assistance and the roll out of average speed cameras will also contribute to preventing speed related harm. While all these actions are important to reducing speeding on our roads, it is important to remember that we all have a shared responsibility as individuals and a society to slow down to and protect ourselves and other road users.”

RSA CEO Sam Waide said studies have repeatedly shown that drivers overestimate the amount of time they can gain by speeding.

He said this is known as the “speed fallacy” and the perceived gain of time is much larger than the actual gain of time.

"For example, completing an average journey of 14 kilometres at 90km/h instead of 80km/h only saves 1 minute and 8 seconds. So, while you might gain one or two minutes journey time you risk losing your license and potentially your livelihood,” he added.

Meanwhile, Assistant Garda Commissioner Paula Hilman said: “If we all slow down a little, we can make a big difference.

"The World Health Organisation (2017) has estimated that a 5pc reduction in average speed could result in a 30pc reduction in fatal collisions, and therefore reducing motorists’ speed is essential to improving safety on our roads.

"Remember that speeding is not worth the potential devastating loss of life or serious injury but also isn’t worth the very real risk of losing your licence – if you are detected speeding you will receive 3 penalty points on your licence, if you get 12 penalty points in three years you will lose your licence for 6 months. A lower threshold of 7 points applies for learner drivers. Think of the impact a disqualification would have not only on your daily life but those who rely on you – family, friends, partners.”


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