Average speed cameras should be used on more Irish roads in the future which could save lives, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Senator Barry Ward was speaking after An Garda Síochána launched its Bank Holiday Roads Enforcement Operation for the October Bank Holiday Weekend. Its special enforcement operation began at 7am on Thursday and will continue until 7am on Wednesday 1st November 2023.
Urging people to stay safe on our roads this weekend, Senator Ward, Fine Gael’s Seanad justice spokesperson, said: “Over 150 people have lost their lives on Irish roads so far this year, and we must look at all options to reverse this worrying trend.
“Average speed camera systems have been installed in two trial locations, on the M7 and in Dublin’s Port Tunnel, since last year. There is huge potential for these systems to be used more widely across the country.
“I welcome the recent announcements from my colleague, Justice Minister McEntee, that an additional €1.2 million is to be allocated for GoSafe vans until the end of this year, with an extra €3.6 million announced for next year under Budget 2024.
“These will provide for additional GoSafe Hours, keep people safe on our roads, and help us build stronger, safer communities. The funding will increase monitoring hours by the GoSafe cameras by an extra 1,500 hours per month until the end of this year.
“The move will bring the number of GoSafe hours up to 9,000 per month. Camera locations will be chosen based on 2023 data showing highest risk of fatal road traffic collisions, where speed was a factor, and on the days and times where this risk is greatest.
“But we must also look at average speed cameras, which I believe will be vital in helping us save lives and building stronger, safer communities. These cameras measure the average speed of a vehicle between two points and can help detect whether someone is speeding.
“We should be rolling out average speed cameras much more widely, as quickly as possible. I understand Transport Infrastructure Ireland has suggested they could be used on about 460km of the rural single carriageway primary road network – and this is something we must implement.”