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Stay within 5km limit for bank holiday, warn gardai

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A garda traffic checkpoint

A garda traffic checkpoint

A garda traffic checkpoint

Don't travel - that's the advice issued by gardai to anyone thinking of driving to a holiday home outside the 5km limit over the bank holiday weekend.

Speaking at the launch of an appeal for road users to exercise extra caution this weekend, gardai warned there will be checkpoints in place after a doubling of pedestrian deaths in the year to date, and a 17pc increase in fatal collisions compared to 2019.

Sixty people had been killed in 56 fatal collisions up to yesterday, compared to 55 deaths in 48 fatal collisions in the same period in 2019.

Operation

"In light of the increase in road deaths this year, An Garda Siochana will launch a roads policing enforcement operation this coming June Bank Holiday weekend," said Chief Superintendent Paul Cleary of the Garda National Roads Policing Unit.

"The operation will concentrate on clamping down on four offences: driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, speeding, non-seatbelt wearing, and using a mobile phone while driving."

Of concern to gardai is the number of people arrested so far this year for driving under the influence of an intoxicant, either alcohol or drugs.

Even with pubs closed and Covid-19 restrictions in place, and a huge reduction in traffic on the roads, there have still been 1,153 people detected driving under the influence of an intoxicant since March 27.

"This bank holiday there will be increased garda activity and roads policing enforcement across the country. This is in response to a significant increase in road fatalities this year," said Chief Supt Cleary.