8.Police/Gardai and TDs

Police/Gardai & TDs

On 06 07 1927 Commissioner William Murphy blamed pedestrians for fatalities in Dublin while Daniel Morrissey TD blamed ‘the fair sex’ for dangerous driving on the 11 07 1951 .

Police since 1869 and Gardai since 1922, have investigated fatal road crashes based on the 1946 Highway Code stopping formula before changing to the longer 1981 TRL 1004  formula in 2007, and referring me to the RSA.

  • Police/Gardai are misled by the incorrect Highway Code and TRL stopping formulas.

On 19 11 2001, Chief Superintendent DN Fitzpatrick referred my research discovery to Superintendent Tom Murphy Ref: TB2/254/01, who met with me and listened but made no further contact.

On 09 05 2005, Chief Superintendent John T. Farrelly Ref; TB254/01 referred me to the Department of Environment who had responsibility for driver Education/Testing and standards at that time.

On 13 02 2007, Garda Tony Kelly misled the Judge and Jury by outlining driver reaction time as 2.20 seconds 31m at 50 km/h, 21m longer than the Rules of the Road in a case where 5 pedestrians died on the footpath.

On 29 08 2007, Assistant Commissioner Eddie Rock took 4 months to confirm that, unfortunately Gardai do not compile statistics in such a way as to provide the data I required.

The 2008 Garda Inspectorate Report extends to 32 pages, has 25 recommendations and refers to the 244 page World Health Organization WHO Report  which now has 612 book references without mentioning stopping distances or the formula used.

On 08 09 2008, Chief Superintendent Aiden Reid took almost 6 months to confirm that the source of the stopping formula evidence outlined by Garda Tony Kelly on 13 02 2007 is the 1981 Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) U.K – AR Quimby and GR Watts, TRRL Laboratory Report 1004 and to contact the RSA.

On 05 11 2008 Sergeant Shane Henry, telephoned to clear up the emergency stopping distance difference between the Road Safety Authority and Gardai but declined to put the explanation in writing.

In 2008, Michael Brosnan was an Inspector in the Garda Traffic Department and became the Road Safety Authority Research Manager on retirement, while Commissioner Rock also joined the RSA on retirement.

On 17 10 2009, Sergeant Colm Finn unveiled a hi-tech unit tasked with finding out how and why fatal crashes happen but the unit has not reported by 2017.

On 24 07 2009 and 11 11 2009, B. Corcoran, Chief Superintendent, Personal Assistant to the Garda Commissioner referred me to Assistant Commissioner Eddie Rock at the Garda National Traffic Bureau.

On 02 09 2009, Assistant Commissioner Eddie Rock, Garda National Traffic Bureau reported in a Garda Press Release and on Radio that 99.50% of drivers stopped at Garda checkpoints were sober.

On 31 05 2010, Mr. Michael Brosnan who as a Garda Inspector outlined driver reaction time/distance at 120 km/h as 2.20 seconds 73m now outlined driver reaction time/distance at 120 km/h as .68 seconds 22m as the Road Safety Authority Research Manager.  Mr. Brosnan was making a Presentation on ‘Speeding at the International Road Safety Conference and used 29 book References as the source of the presentation information including ‘Wramborg, P (2005) which has 1,500 pages, 1,600 Reference books including the incorrect 1981 TRRL Report 1004 by AR. Quimby BSc. and GR. Watts BSc. MSc PhD used by Garda Kelly.

On 14 11 2011, Mr. Eddie Rock who as a Garda Assistant Commissioner had penalty points removed from his licence on 3 occasions, outlined driver reaction time/distance at 120 km/h as 2.20 seconds 73m, claimed that 99.50% of drivers stopped at Garda checkpoints were sober.  However, on joining the board of the Road Safety Authority Mr. Rock was now outlining driver reaction time/distance at 120 km/h as .68 seconds 22m and claiming that alcohol was a factor in 38% of road fatalities between 2008 and 2012.

  • Garda and Road Safety Authority representatives declined to clarify these contradictions

In 2010, Ireland won the EU road safety Award based on statistics and Superintendent Declan O’Brien responded; Stopping distances and reaction times are issues for the Road Safety Authority who have statutory responsibility in this area. However, Superintendent O’Brien overlooked the fact that Gardai had investigated road fatalities for 88 years at this stage before he retired and took up a position with Abtran who received 26m from the RSA by 2016.

On 31 05 2010, Superintendent Con O ‘Donohoe made a Presentation on Speed Detection Cameras in Ireland without addressing the 50 metre stopping difference from 120 km/h between that outlined by Gardai and the RSA or outlining that research shows there is no evidence that Speed Detection Cameras save lives.

  • Gardai enforced the speed limit daily on the R108 in contravention of the rules for 10 years.

On 17 12 2010, Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey who had replaced Assistant Commissioner Eddie Rock said; the SHARP decline in people being killed or seriously injured on the roads in recent weeks has been attributed to the introduction of new speed cameras but soon changed his view.

On 20 12 2010, Assistant Commissioner John Twomey responded to my queries posed 9 months earlier; The concerns raised by you regarding stopping distances and reaction times would be more appropriately addressed by the Road Safety Authority, but Gardai are investigating fatal crashes for 88 years since 1922.

In 2010 Gardai recorded 212 fatalities, the PSNI a further 55, a fatality every 32 hours and Garda patrol car crashes increased to 578, a crash every 15 hours while Gardai removed Collision Prone Zones after I discovered a similar number of crashes on many roads.

On 15 03 2011, Assistant Commissioner John Twomey responded; the increase in fatalities on our roads to date this year is a cause of great concern to us in An Garda Síochána.

On 18 10 2011, Assistant Commissioner John Twomey responded; I have had your correspondence “The Driving Scorecard System” examined by the Garda Driving School.  The Garda Driving School is of the view that your book is more relevant to learner drivers than to Garda Driver Training. The RSA have statutory responsibility in the area of Road Safety Authority Act 2006, however

In 2011, Gardai removed from official statistics 14 fatalities and a further 17 in 2012 as well as the 212 of 990 before the Road Safety Authority were allowed examine them and make Landmark decisions on Alcohol, Speed and tyres while Theory Test Questions on Alcohol were introduced based on these flawed statistics.

Assistant Commissioner Twomey was mistaken as 3 months before he responded; Garda Garry McLoughlin was fatally injured on 19 07 2011 during an unnecessary Garda pursuit at 180 km/h involving Gardai trained by the RSA and at the Garda Driving School. In 2011 Garda patrol car crashes reached 667 and 186 fatalities were recorded. In 2012 Garda patrol car crashes reached 639 and 162 fatalities were recorded.

Commissioner John Twomey did not disclose the stopping distance formula used by Garda Driving School, the name of the Garda who examined my research, the reason Gardai and the RSA stopping distance differs by 50m from a speed of 120 km/h, the reason Collision Prone Zones were removed from the Garda web Page or the purpose of pursuing drivers for minor traffic offences at 180 km/h.  A Garda who passes the RSA driving test may be authorised drive Garda patrol cars at 180 km/h by Chief Superintendents and Assistant Garda Commissioners.

On 16 04 2014, Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey, Superintendent Cornelius O Donohue and Chief Superintendent Michael O’Sullivan of the Garda National Traffic Bureau appear to have misled the Oireachtas Transport Committee on speed, Collision Prone Zones and statistics.  They were aware of my research findings and that GoSafe Cameras established to reduce speed-related collisions and save lives, failed to do so.

On 16 04 2014, Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey, said; “excessive speed remains the number one road safety problem in Ireland.

  • Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey is mistaken 

On 20 10 2011 Chief Superintendent John Roche said; Gardai have a 'big issue' with the location of speed vans, but Gardai decide on the locations.  

On 27 02 2012 Garda Karen O'Brien having previously refereed my queries to the RSA now responded with CC; Cornelius O’Donohue: “Requests to An Garda Síochána for data, personal assistance or resources by external researchers, students, academic institutions, state departments, practitioners or agencies must be submitted to the Head of the Garda Research Unit, Garda College at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. who will process the application on behalf of, and in line with, the Commissioner’s priorities on policing”

On 05 03 2012, Patrick Kennedy Garda Research Department Templemore (Rank not stated) responded:

“I wish to inform you that 'The Data Controller', The Commissioner of An Garda Síochána wishes to inform you, due to compliance with the Code of Practice for An Garda Síochána under Data Protection Legislation, he is not in a position to release the data you requested”

  • Martin Callinan was the Garda Commissioner at this time

On 01 10 2012, Assistant Commissioner Gerard Phillips said, Dublin has the safest roads of all EU Capital Cities and that is a very significant honor to hold. This honor finished when I discovered underreporting of fatalities.

In 2012, on the RTE final Prime Time Programme of the year Commissioner Martin Callinan claimed that road deaths were down by 20 on 2011 figures, but failed to mention those fatalities which were removed.

On the 26 09 2016, the RTE Prime Time Programme presenter Keelin Shanley interviewed Garda Derek Cloughley as regard road deaths and he incorrectly claimed that; mobile phones,  failing to wear a safety belt, speeding and drinking and driving are the 4 causes of road crashes.

  • Garda Derek Cloughley misled other Gardai, Driving Instructors and over 500,000 RTE viewers.

On 21 10 2015, Chief Superintendent Mark Curran said, it is tragic to think that one third of drivers and passengers, who have lost their lives were not wearing seat belts. Seat belts do not prevent crashes and did not save the two-thirds who were deemed to be wearing them.  A Garda wearing a seat belt died when struck at 180 km/h by the pursued brain bottleneck driver who was not wearing his seat belt while 4 people wearing seat belts were drowned in two separate car crashes as they were trapped by safety belts after crashing.

  • A driver at speed beyond ability attempting to escape capture at 180 km/h does not purposely crash

Garda Ombudsman

The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission GSOC was set up in 2007 to provide efficient, fair and independent oversight of policing in Ireland including the investigation of serious crashes involving Gardai. On 19 06 2015, Samantha Clinton, Garda Síochána Ombudsman’s Office responded after reminders; Mr Nick Harden, Senior Investigating Officer, will contact you in this regard, in due course, but he has failed to do so by 12 03 2017. In 2014, Gardai were involved in 613 patrol car crashes, a crash every 14 hours and in a 9 month period there were at least 8 civilian fatalities and 19 injuries involving police vehicles in Ireland.

  • The Garda Ombudsman Commission does not appear very fair to me.

Gardai and other Organisations

Gardai, the Road Safety Authority and the Health and Safety Authority jointly produced the Safe Driving for Work handbook and Driving for Work Driver Health Guidelines but they do not agree on Stopping Distances. Ms Deidre Sinnott McFeat, the Health and Safety Senior Policy Inspector responded; The HSA have been advised by the RSA in relation to the distances quoted. The Health and Safety Authority, its servants or agents, accept no liability for any errors or omissions in the information provided in this correspondence. I again recommend that you take this matter up directly with the RSA.

  • One Organisation and Government Department should be in charge of all aspects of road safety.

Garda Policing Authority

On 01 07 2016, Annie X. O'Malley, Garda Policing Authority responded, Ref: PA/2016/205; “On behalf of the Policing Authority, I wish to acknowledge with thanks your email of 10th June in which you shared your research regarding ways to improve Garda driver training and safety. The Policing Authority's principal role is to oversee the performance of the Garda Síochána of its functions relating to policing services. The Authority also has a role in keeping under review the arrangements for training members of the Gardaí. The issues that you raise are relevant to this function and will be given due consideration as part of that work.  We welcome any further suggestions of a general nature which you may have in writing so that they may be passed on to the relevant Committees of the Authority”, however

Police and committees since 1869, Gardai since 1922, TRL since 1933, the Highway Code since 1946, the EU since 1973, Euro NCAP since 1997 established by TRL, the RSA since 2006 who promote NCAP and use the incorrect 1946 Highway Code formula, the Garda Ombudsman Commission since 2007 who are investigating and researching fatal road crashes while disagreeing on stopping distances all failed to eliminate road crashes.

The Policing Authority was established in 2016 without establishing the driving standard and speed limitation of the members or if in fact if they are drivers. The Authority consists of a chairperson and 8 ordinary members. Mr Noel Brett having served as the RSA, CEO for 10 years is and ordinary member of the Policing Authority and aware of my research discovery since 01 09 2006 Ref: 485/09.

  • In 2012 the RSA recorded 162 road fatalities under the stewardship of Mr. Noel Brett RSA CEO
  • In 2016, at 188 there were 25 more road fatalities recorded under the stewardship of Ms. Moyagh Murdock the RSA CEO
  • The Policing Authority differ little from GSOC so road fatalities are set to continue for another 148 years.

Between 2008 and 2012, Ireland won the EU Road Safety Award. During this period, Gardai removed 31 fatalities from official statistics as well as 212 of 990 before the RSA was allowed examine and publish them. 

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