Jim Higgins MEP for Ireland North West and Ireland's member of the European Parliament Transport Committee has expressed huge concern over the latest figures released by the RSA which show that the five people have lost their lives in Co Mayo in the first six months of this year, an increase of 25 per cent on the same period last year.
Speaking at his constituency office in Co Mayo, Mr Higgins said: “I am concerned that the lack of a Garda presence on our roads is resulting in more people losing their lives in 2013 so far. I want to see this trend reversed. We also need the cooperation of all road users - motorists, pedestrians and cyclists alike in order to drive deaths down. I want to see this latest trend stopped, and visible traffic units mounted more often in the county.”
Nationally figures remain stable compared to last year, with an increase of just two deaths from 92 to 94 deaths for the first six months. “Last year was the safest year ever on Irish roads, with 161 people losing their lives, thanks to the work of the RSA and the public's cooperation. We need to make sure 2013 is even safer, and stop the bloody slaughter,” said the FG MEP.
Mr Higgins paid particular tribute to the work of the RSA saying: “Since the RSA was set up in 2006, the number of lives lost has been falling year on year. This has been due to a combination of driver education, hard hitting ads, better enforcement, new driving tests and licences, the NCT and penalty points. From being one of the most dangerous countries a decade ago, we are now the fourth safest country in the EU in which to drive - this is no small achievement.”