Mrs Doyle has changed her brew, all for the cause of road safety,.Mrs Doyle has ditched the teas bags for coffee to drive home a very important safety message this weekend. The legendary image of Pauline McLynn is set to dominate the west of Ireland landscape with a plea 'go on, go on, take a break' and have a cup of coffee.
Mayo County Council Road Safety is undertaking this initiative for this coming bank holiday weekend. Mayo County Council has teamed up with An Garda Siochana to organise a road safety campaign. The campaign has been given thumbs up by Pauline McLynn who played the part of Mrs Doyle in Father Ted and also by the production company Hat Trick Productions Ltd which produced Father Ted which gave the road safety office of Mayo County Council a licence to use the images.
The campaign is called 'Go on, Go on, Take a Break' aims is to encourage drivers to plan their actions before they head out on their travels. Figures released last year by the gardai and RSA revealed, over a five year period, 12 people had died and 27 people had been seriously injured on Irish roads over the previous August Bank Holiday weekends.
Road signs of Mrs Doyle will be erected around the county with road safety slogans on them in an effort to remind drivers to freshen up by taking a break and to think about the consequences of driving tired. Sadly, many drivers are still falling into old habits, some of which can prove potentially lethal.
Mayo's road safety officer Noel Gibbons said: "The August Bank Holiday weekend is by far one of the busiest, and unfortunately the deadliest, weekends on the roads. Using the roads is one of the most dangerous thing we do every day, and people do so in a fashion that comes as second nature to them. You can't underestimate the importance of stopping for a break for a cup of coffee. As Mrs Doyle would say, go on, go on, have a cup of coffee."
Cathoirleach of Mayo County Council, Councillor Al McDonnell, said: "This awareness campaign is more important for Ireland now than ever before because we are beginning to have long continuous stretches of motorway. Especially at this time of year, when people on holidays tend to drive long distances across the country, the dangers of fatigue are at their worst. Take regular breaks when you are driving long distances, share the driving if you can, and never ignore the tell-tale warning signs of fatigue."
Garda Inspector Joe McKeanna, Castlebar, said: "I have seen too many horrific injuries caused by people falling asleep at the wheel to take this lightly. Sleep related collisions tend to be more serious than other road collisions because the driver is unable to react before a crash. You don't fall asleep without a warning; if you are fighting to keep yourself awake, then get off the road."