Ireland’s road death rise against EU trend

EU Commission says road deaths rose here by 19 per cent when averages fell across EU

The countries with the lowest rates of road fatalities remain the UK, Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark. Photograph: Eric Luke

The countries with the lowest rates of road fatalities remain the UK, Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark. Photograph: Eric Luke

Mon, Mar 31, 2014, 20:44

Ireland is failing to match the EU trend which has seen a reduction in the number of people killed on the roads across Europe.

New EU statistics show the increase of 19 per cent in the number killed on the roads in the Republic last year compared to an EU-wide average reduction of 8 per cent.

While the report from the EU Commission noted the Republic’s success in achieving seven years of sustained reductions in road deaths up to 2012, it found Ireland is now one of a few countries which are going against the trend.

The countries with the lowest rates of road fatalities remain the UK, Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark, reporting about 30 deaths per million inhabitants.

On average, there are currently 52 road deaths per million inhabitants in the EU. The Republic was at 42 in 2013.

While 2013 was a bad year for the Republic, it was the second year in a row that saw an impressive decrease in the number of people killed on EU roads. According to the preliminary figures, the number of road fatalities in the EU decreased by 8 per cent in 2013 compared to 2012. This followed a 9 per cent decrease in 2012.

Lives saved

Across the EU, a 17 per cent decrease since 2010 means

9,000 lives have been saved, the report said.

Siim Kallas, EU commissioner for mobility and transport, said said member states that have made progress but whose road fatality figures are still much higher than the EU average include Poland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania and Greece.