Darragh Farrell, aged 32, from Woodhill Villas in Tivoli on the outskirts of Cork city, became the latest person to die on Irish roads just after 3am yesterday.
He died just across the road from his family home when the car he was driving east out of the city crashed through a wall on the dangerous skew bridge in Tivoli.
Mr Farrell’s mother, who was in bed at the time, heard the noise of the impact but did not realise until later that her son had been killed.
Two friends — a male and a female — who were in the car and were injured were recovering in separate hospitals last night.
Gardaí sealed off the scene of the crash for almost eight hours yesterday as forensic teams examined the site and the car.
The road closure, combined with another crash on the Dunkettle side of the Jack Lynch Tunnel at 8.30am, resulted in severe early morning gridlock. The exact cause of the Tivoli accident was still unknown last night.
“Forensic analysis is still being carried out,” a garda spokesman said.
But gardaí have established that Mr Farrell’s two-litre Mazda appears to have veered across the road just before the left turn across the skew bridge, and smashed through a wall between 20-foot black and amber warning signs before plunging down an embankment. It came to rest in undergrowth in an almost vertical position.
Gardaí at Mayfield appealed for witnesses, especially anyone who saw the maroon-coloured 98-C registered Mazda before the accident.
“We know the car was coming from the city. It is most likely that it came down the Lower Road,” the spokesman said.
Garda traffic inspector Billy Duane said there had now been 11 fatal accidents in Cork city and county this year and more than half of those killed were under 25.
Meanwhile, one man was taken to hospital yesterday afternoon after a two-car collision on the west side of Ballincollig, Co Cork. His injuries were described as not life-threatening.