Road safety is of paramount concern, so Mayo County Council's Road Safety Officer has issued an appeal to candidates who are contesting the upcoming Presidential election when erecting election posters. “Driver distraction has a negative impact on road safety and so only essential signage should appear,” said Mr Noel Gibbons.
Election agents are advised that any election poster or material should not be sited or displayed in a manner which obscures any roadway sign or creates a safety risk or hazard to the use of the roadway. Any signs or posters erected in contravention of these requirements is liable to be removed by the county council in the interest of safety of road users.
There is a safety issue connected to the erection and removal of posters, particularly those which are inappropriately sited.
“A build-up of election material can often have a negative visual impact on the general amenity of roads with possible safety implications for drivers and pedestrians.
“Election candidates tend to place their posters in areas which are crucial to road users such as on roundabouts, statutory road signs, directional signs, traffic light poles, stop or yield signs or other crucial areas,” the road safety officer added.
However, Mr Gibbons believes this can be a problem for motorists. “We can appreciate that candidates need to get their posters out there and in the best possible areas, but by placing them in these areas, this can lead to problems for motorists such as vision impairment, obstruction or distraction, which could lead to a collision, so in the interest of road safety I am appealing to candidates to be conscious of where posters are placed and please ensure that they are not placed in hazardous areas.”
Among the signs that should not be obscured are those relating to speed limits, junction warnings, road works, and directions.
Volunteers that erect the posters are also reminded to take care when erecting posters, taking account of the hazards of working close to moving traffic.