Jim Higgins MEP for Ireland North West and Ireland's Member of the European Parliament Transport Committee, has encouraged people who are applying for a new driver's licence from January 19 to fill in the section on the new application form which allows them to be identified as an organ donor.
Speaking at his constituency office in Mayo, Mr Higgins said: “The new plastic credit card style cards will provide the option for drivers to carry a code which would identify them as an organ donor. This is especially important as organ transfers following a car accident need to be done as quickly as possible. It also means that people need to carry one less card, since the new driver's licence will fit in your wallet. However in keeping with the current legal position your next of kin will be consulted in the event of any decision of this nature.”
The current paper driver licence and learner permits are to be replaced by the new credit card-sized, plastic licences in an EU-wide change to upgrade all driver licences to combat fraud. Other features of the new system include a microchip for online services, including applying for driver licences online.
“This will be a huge, welcome improvement from the bulky paper versions we carry at the moment. It is just another element of the drive to improve road safety,” he concluded.