RSA Welcomes Minister Naughton’s Announcement to Review Fixed Charges for Key Road Safety Offences
The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has welcomed the statement from Minister of State at the Department of Transport Hildegarde Naughton to look at increasing fixed charges for speeding, non-seatbelt wearing and mobile phone use while driving.
Commenting on the announcement Ms. Liz O’Donnell, Chairperson, RSA said, “Unfortunately, people are disregarding the rules and the penalties must be meaningful to ensure compliance. Too many people are being killed and seriously injured. We must act to save lives.”
She added that “Ireland’s government Road Safety Strategy, which runs from 2021 to 2030, has a core aim of reducing deaths and serious injuries by 50% over the next decade. It is also the first step in Ireland’s journey towards Vision Zero, where there will be zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads by 2050. We need to transform our approach to road safety in Ireland if we are to achieve these ambitious targets. Part of this transformational approach includes implementing tougher sanctions for speeding, non-seat belt use and using a mobile phone while driving.”
Action 30 of the new government Road Safety Strategy contains the action to ‘Review the penalties for serious road traffic offences including the following: impaired driving, speeding, mobile phone use, non-wearing of seat belts, carrying unrestrained children in a vehicle’.
Concluding Ms. O’Donnell said “An RSA commissioned survey in 2021 found that the majority of motorists support increasing current penalties for non-wearing of seat belts, speeding and mobile phone use while driving.”
Specifically, 66% of motorists support increasing the current penalty for driving without wearing a seat belt; and 67% support increasing the penalty for driving with passengers not wearing a seat belt. Over 50% of motorists support doubling the current penalty for drivers not wearing a seat belt, and for driving with passengers not wearing a seat belt.
61% of motorists support increasing the current penalty for speeding.
The highest level of support for increasing current penalties relates to the use of mobile phones while driving, with 70% of motorists supporting an increase to the current penalty, and 57% of motorists supporting doubling the current penalty.