Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Gay Byrne calls for speed cameras. Again.

Road deaths are at historically low levels, having been on a downward trend for the past decade or more, but you would not believe it listening to those who work in the Road Safety Industry.

Road Safety Authority (RSA) chairman Gay Byrne continues to act as cheerleader for private speed camera companies looking to screw yet more money out of the Irish motorist. Gombeen Man had hoped Byrne would disappear from our hand-held radar when he retired from the risible Late Late Show, but that was obviously hoping for too much.

There seems to be an Irish obsession with the issue of speed. “Speed kills” the mantra goes - but surely bad driving kills? A large part of Germany’s Autobahn system has no mandatory speed limit, yet they are the safest roads in that country.

Byrne’s stupid pronouncements on speed cameras ignore the drink-driving culture that is still alive and well in Ireland - at least until the next single-vehicle crash into a ditch or a wall, that is.

A study carried out between 2003-2005 shows that 31% of road deaths in that period were alcohol-related. However, it seems that no blood alcohol samples were taken in another one-third of accidents, so the true figure is certainly higher.

In view of this bombshell, why are Byrne and the RSA focusing on making people watch their speedos rather than the road ahead? Why are they more interested in the pettiness of hitting people with points and fines for exceeding speed limits by a few Kph – often on good roads with inappropriately low speed limits? Will that really “save lives”? No, it won’t

Instead, they should concentrate on driver education (lane usage, for example), and full alcohol testing at all accidents (to build a true picture of accident causes). And lastly, they should campaign against the Government’s scandalous VRT tax which penalises life-saving safety features such as skid-avoidance technology.

Oh, and Gay Byrne should just butt out of our lives for good.

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Anonymous said...

I like your style dude.

Anonymous said...

well said
Speed cameras are nothing but money making machines

Bernd said...

... and why are the Autobahns so safe?

They are wide.
They are built in as straight a line as possible.
They have ample emergency breakdown areas.
They have decent barriers.
They have rest areas.
They have emergency phones installed every two kilometers.
They are patrolled by police actually bothering about enforcing traffic laws.
They are served by a first rate rescue and emergency medical service (which improves "survivability" of accidents).
There is mandatory driving instruction by tested driving instructors in Germany, including night, bad weather and Autobahn driving.

Please put a check mark against any of those found in Eireland.

Case closed.

The Gombeen Man said...

Maybe we should send Gay Byrne on a fact-finding mission to see the Autobahns first-hand? But I suspect he doesn't really want to know the answers.

So, failing that, how about southern Afghanistan?

Anonymous said...

Was In Galway last week (when will I ever learn????). They STILL have a 50K/m limit on their bypass (large empty swamp on either side of the dual carriagemay) Was doing 70Km/h (only because I was lost) with the world passing me by on the overtaking lane at 90 plus.