Garda drink-driving clampdown continues


The Garda crackdown on drink-driving will continue today as thousands make their way home after the August Bank Holiday weekend.

The campaign will focus on road safety and emphasise the dangers of drink-driving. Checkpoints and the monitoring of licensed premises and drink-driving will continue today in each of the Garda divisions.

The campaign is supported by the National Safety Council (NSC) with the Irish Insurance Federation sponsored anti-drink-driving advertising promotion.

The council advised drivers to plan journeys in advance and to set off as early as possible to avoid heavy traffic and to be extra alert on unfamiliar roads. It is part of the "Arrive Alive" summer road safety initiative.

Alan Richardson, acting chief executive of the NSC said: "Recent Irish research tells us that alcohol consumption could be a factor in as many as four out of 10 driver, rider and pedestrian deaths each year in this country."

The council advised drivers to adopt an appropriate speed for the conditions; not to tailgate; never to drive while impaired by alcohol, drugs or tiredness; to wear a seatbelt and to ensure all passengers are wearing theirs.

They also advised motorists to plan their journey in advance and to set off as early as possible to avoid heavy traffic; to take frequent breaks to avoid tiredness/driver fatigue and to be extra alert.

The NSC said that while on holiday drivers tended to relax their guard and warned them to be especially alert if driving on unfamiliar roads.

Gardaí said that over the August Bank Holiday last year five people were killed and 89 injured on the roads. Arrests for drink-driving have increased by 872 (16 per cent) for the first six months of this year compared to 2004.