A woman was killed and a man seriously injured today after a suspected drunk driver mounted a footpath and ploughed into a group of people.
The crash happened just hours before events kicked off around the country to remember the victims of road traffic accidents.
Five people were mingling outside Kavanagh’s Pub, along the Malahide Road in north Dublin, at about 2.15am when the vehicle hurtled towards them.
Four were taken to the Mater Hospital where a 53-year-old woman died from her injuries.
A man in his 30s was in a serious condition in the hospital, while the two others are believed to have suffered minor injuries.
Gardaí said the driver, also aged in his 30s, was arrested at the scene for drunk driving and was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
It is understood he has since been discharged.
The scene was closed to traffic to allow crash investigators to carry out an examination and officers have appealed for anyone with information to come forward.
Some 205 people have died on the country’s roads so far this year, down around 20 on the same period in 2008.
Road safety chiefs joined with emergency services and the gardai to mark World Remembrance Day for Road Traffic Victims.
Up to Friday more than 22,640 people have been killed on Ireland’s roads since records began in 1959 – equivalent to the population of Tralee and surrounding areas.
Gay Byrne, Road Safety Authority chairman, said the day should serve as a reminder of how vulnerable we are on the roads.
“This Sunday, World Remembrance Day for Road Traffic Victims allows us to remember those whose lives have been tragically lost on our roads, and the families who have been devastated by their loss.
“However, the most poignant point is that these deaths, the devastation and trauma could have been prevented.
“To those who have not yet changed their behaviour and taken responsibility for their actions on the roads I make a personal plea to you, to reflect on the risks you take and the risk you force on others.”
Mr Byrne also urged those in leadership to come up with practical ideas to save lives and prevent injuries.
Activities across the country include special services, prayers at masses and advertisements in local media reminding people of the day.
A Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims was first initiated by RoadPeace, the UK national charity for road victims.
Following the adoption of a resolution by the United Nations General Assembly in October 2005, the third Sunday in November of every year is now recognised as the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.