Speed cameras “to save lives, not generate revenue”

The new network of speed cameras will record more than 750 hours of driving before the end of the month, it emerged tonight.

The new network of speed cameras will record more than 750 hours of driving before the end of the month, it emerged tonight.

Gardaí revealed 15 camera vans will be rolled out at accident blackspots across the country from midnight with the aim of changing killer driver behaviour.

The Garda website crashed as more than 50,000 motorists tried to access a map of the 750 sites where the vans will be mounted nationwide.

Road safety chiefs warned approximately one third of road deaths are caused by speeding.

“We all know that driving too fast increases your risk of being involved in a serious or fatal collision,” said Noel Brett, of the Road Safety Authority.

“Last year alone 80 people died on our roads because of this killer behaviour and up to 1,000 people suffered serious injuries such as broken spinal cords, brain injuries and loss of limbs.”

A total of 198 people have been killed on Irish roads so far this year.

Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said while the number of fatalities has dropped significantly in recent years, drivers could not afford to be complacent.

“These safety cameras are another means of encouraging drivers to slow down,” said Mr Ahern.

“Our aim is to change driver behaviour, reduce speed and as a result improve road safety. It is not to generate revenue either for the state or the service provider.”

Donegal was identified as having the most sites for speed related crashes, 63, followed by 62 in Cork and 52 in Meath. Just six were located in Sligo and 19 in Dublin.

The GoSafe Consortium has been contracted to operate the cameras and will be paid for the number of hours of service provided and not the amount of speeding drivers detected.

By February up to 45 cameras will have captured 6,000 hours of monitoring.

A map can be seen on www.garda.ie/gosafe.html and the Garda Facebook page.

Transport Minister Noel Dempsey said the purpose of the new safety cameras is to save lives and prevent serious injuries on our roads.

“Excessive speed is still the top killer on Irish roads,” said Mr Dempsey.

“Every fatal accident on our roads is tragic and devastating for the families and loved ones left behind. Road safety remains a priority for this Government.”

Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy said safety cameras were proven life savers.

“In countries where a safety camera network has been introduced, deaths and injuries as a result of speeding have dropped significantly,” he said.

“We in An Garda Siochana are appealing to people to slow down and save a life.

“It could be your own life; it could be someone in your family, your next-door neighbour, a work colleague or someone you’ve never met.

“If we all work together and slow down, we can and will reduce the number of deaths on our roads.”

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