Award winning Road Safety efforts by Mayo County Council

Mayo County Council has been named winner of the Public Sector Award for Best Road Safety Campaign. From left: Paul Dolan Mayo County Council; Tom Gilligan; Noel Gibbons, road safety officer, Mayo County Council; and Superintendent Joe McKenna. Photo: Conor McKeown.

Mayo County Council has been named winner of the Public Sector Award for Best Road Safety Campaign. From left: Paul Dolan Mayo County Council; Tom Gilligan; Noel Gibbons, road safety officer, Mayo County Council; and Superintendent Joe McKenna. Photo: Conor McKeown.

Mayo County Council has been named overall winner of the Road Safety Award 2016 in the Public Sector Awards Magazine. Mayo County Council and the Mayo Road Safety Working Group are delighted to accept this award for their work in promoting road safety awareness.

Cllr Al McDonnell, cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council believes that road safety still is a major challenge in Mayo, saying: “Increasing road safety awareness is extremely important and saving lives on our roads requires persistence. Young and old must be taught about road safety – even experienced drivers need reminding of it on a regular basis.”

He added: “Young driver safety is a high priority especially here in Mayo and all of us are trying to find effective and acceptable ways of reducing the risk that these young people face. The educational approach we are taking is raising awareness among drivers who are generally focused on driving safely, but still need reminding of their responsibilities, but a different strategy will need to be found to tackle the reckless minority who willfully take to the wheel while unfit to do so – or who deliberately drive in a dangerous manner.”

Noel Gibbons, road safety officer, said: “The continued loss of lives on our roads, whatever the cause, is a sharp reminder that we can never be complacent when it comes to saving lives. Whatever the next set of road safety statistics show, one thing is certain, road safety will still require our continued shared efforts if we want to make our roads safe.

“I would appeal to all road users, to please make the right decision when using the road. This means wearing a hi-viz jacket and being seen if you are walking, running, cycling or riding a motorbike. Slow down if you are a driver, especially when sharing the road with vulnerable road users. Everyone needs to wear a seat belt, front and rear on every trip and ensure that children are properly restrained. Never drive while distracted by a mobile phone and never drive while impaired, whether through drink, drugs or driver fatigue.

“Road users are ignoring these important messages and that is why we continue to have death and serious injury on our roads. As a community, we simply must stop the carnage we have witnessed on our roads. To date, 171 people have lost their lives on Irish roads, an increase of 28 on the same period in 2015; 13 deaths were recorded in Mayo in 2015 on our roads. We all have to take responsibility for our actions and by sharing the road safely and working together we can all help prevent death and serious injury on our roads.”

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