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Committee Concern as Road Deaths Continue to Rise

Synopsis: During a recent briefing from the PSNI, members of the Environment Committee expressed their increasing concern about the rising number of fatal accidents on roads.

Session: 2014/2015

Date: 01 October 2014

Reference: ENV 01/14/15

During a recent briefing from the PSNI, members of the Environment Committee expressed their increasing concern about the rising number of fatal accidents on roads. Police Service representatives attended the meeting to discuss the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill, which is currently being scrutinised by the Committee, and members used this opportunity to seek further information on the causes of these road deaths.

Although officers were unable to comment on recent incidents, the briefing focused on the way that the Bill could make driving safer by the introduction of a lower blood alcohol limit for new and professional drivers. Other measures that could help cut road accidents are a longer period of training for learner drivers and restrictions on newly qualified drivers.

Committee Chairperson Anna Lo MLA said: "In just the nine months of 2014 there have been more road deaths - 59 so far - than for all of 2013 when 57 people lost their lives. This is clearly a situation that requires urgent attention and we would call on all road users to drive with care.

"The Committee believes that the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill may help to make an impact on these shocking statistics and we will be speaking to a number of organisations over the next few weeks to ensure that we are content that the provisions of the Bill are as effective as possible."

ENDS

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