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Irish Transport Minister Acknowledges Insufficient Road Safety for Schoolchildren Walking or Cycling

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan has acknowledged the inadequacy of road safety for children walking or cycling to school in Ireland. Speaking in the Dail, he emphasised the need for change, even though road conditions have seen improvements over the years. Mr. Ryan stated that the current state of Irish streets poses risks not only to children but also to experienced cyclists, necessitating a shift towards public transport and active travel for safer and more efficient roads.

In light of the forthcoming Bank Holiday weekend and the shift to darker evenings due to the clock change on October 29, the Road Safety Authority, An Garda Síochána, and Minister Jack Chambers issued a joint warning to drivers, urging extra caution regarding pedestrians on the roads. New data indicating the highest road death figures in 15 years, with 38 pedestrian fatalities this year, underscored the heightened danger for pedestrians during the winter months.

Green Party TD Marc Ó Cathasaigh shared a personal account in the Dail, describing how his children narrowly avoided an accident on Irish roads while crossing at a signalled pedestrian crossing in broad daylight. He emphasised that the visibility of road users matters little if drivers are not attentive, particularly for vulnerable road users who lack the protective encasement of a vehicle.

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