Christy Moore ‘appalled and angered’ by texting truck drivers
Dublin ceremony hears relatives speak of pain of losing loved ones in road incidents
Singer Christy Moore performs at an event for families of road crash victims at Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins
Patricia Gibbons from Rahan,Tullamore, Co Offaly, with a photo of her husband James Gibbons at Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins
Singer-songwriter Christy Moore is angered and appalled by the number of heavy trucks being driven by people while texting on their mobile phones.
He spoke out against the use of mobile phones while driving when he attended a ceremony in Dublin at which families of victims gathered ahead of the official World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims this weekend.
“Coming here this morning, I don’t know how many people I saw on their mobile phones as they drove, men and women, not just [when they were] stationary in traffic lights,” he said.
“I’m amazed by the number of heavy trucks that are driven by people who are either texting or looking at their phones, and it really appals and angers me,” he added.
People whose lives have been touched by road traffic incidents came together for the remembrance event in Smock Alley Theatre.
They spoke of the unending pain they feel after the loss of their loved ones.
The event was organised by the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and featured a set from Moore, who recalled how road traffic incidents had affected people in his life through the years.
Similar ceremonies will be held across the country on Sunday to coincide with the UN’s international remembrance day.
A man who was instrumental in holding the first Irish remembrance service for road crash victims a decade ago was in Smock Alley yesterday.
Michael O’Neill, from Monasterboice, Co Louth, lost his 21-year-old daughter Fiona when she and her boyfriend Dominic Wogan (23) were killed in a collision between their car and a lorry on November 19th, 2001, just hours before they were due to jet off to start a new life in Australia.
Speed and enforcement on Irish roads are the two big issues that Mr O’Neill wants to see addressed, and he lamented what he called the inadequate resourcing of the Garda Traffic Corps.
“The Garda’s hands are tied a lot of the time, they haven’t got the resources, but I think they should be given the resources to pay more attention to road safety.”
Kathleen Kirby’s sons Paul (20) and Dave (18) died when their car went off a sharp bend in Midleton, Co Cork, in April 2005. “The pain is unbelievable. My heart is broken. I go out, I smile, I get on with life, I make the effort – but I’m not the person that I was,” she said.
“What I would say to people, and it’s a very important message, is slow down. Are you in such a hurry to get to the graveyard? That’s basically what it is.
“And please put the phones away, the person will ring you back.”