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Who understands and is responsible for the Rules on Driving?

Who understands and is responsible for the Rules on Driving?

Introduction

It appears there are far too many people in charge of road safety for 152 years, as

In 1869, or 152 years ago, Police recorded the world’s first fatal road crash in a steam driven car in Ireland, which was 9 years after the invention of the bicycle in about 1860.

In 1927, Gardai deemed pedestrians and cyclists to be the cause of road fatalities.

In 2021, the Garda Mountain Bike Training for Gardai who have cycled for over 20 years is over a five-day course during which time Gardai must complete and pass a fitness and balance test.

Approved Driving Instructors ADIs must deliver Essential Driver Training EDT in 12 hours and Initial Basic Training IBT in 16 hours on shared public roads, to some who never previously drove or cycled.

Driver testing of ability to control a car at a speed of 100 km/h on two-way roads and 120 km/h on one-way roads may be conducted in 30 km/h areas with ramps installed dictating speeds of 10 km/h.

Since 1946, TRLs Highway Code stopping distances are designed based on driver Thinking Time of 0.70 seconds, braking distances beyond emergency standard and for one-way roads with longer distances for wet roads.

Since 1957, TRL is the source of the Departments of Local Government, Environment and Transport 3 different Rules Road and 2 Garda stopping distances in Ireland.

Since 1958, TRL is the source of the Monash University Rules of the Road stopping distances and the Monash University Accident Research Centre MUARC stopping distances since 1987.

In 1981, TRL designed a new formula using 2.20 seconds Thinking Distance and Since 1996, TRL is privatised and misleads their 1,000 clients in 145 countries worldwide

In 1997, Christopher Moore 3 years and 11 months was fatally injured when struck by a car driven by a Garda, who left a 27-metre tyre mark on the road with 7 metres before and 20 metres after impact in a 64 km/h area.

Since 09 11 2001, Ref TB2/254/01, Chief Superintendent DN Fitzpatrick Garda National Traffic Bureau and other Garda Officers decline to correct TRLs UK Government stopping formula mistake

Since 2007, TRL provided Gardai and the RSA with stopping distances that differed by 50 metres when stopping from 120 km/h.

In 1959, the three-point seat belt was invented and in 2021 or 62 years later the RSA provide a seat belt fitting course ‘Check it fits’ in car parks as they claim that, “4 OUT OF 5 CHILD CAR SEATS ARE INCORRECTLY FITTED”.

GardaBikeSafe is a three-hour motorcycle course run by Advanced Garda Motorcyclists, for drivers who were trained and tested under IBT Rules by the RSA and certified as competent to drive at speed to 120 km/h.

Emergency Services Driving Standard ESDS 2014 is a course designed by the RSA to be taught by ADIs while using: EDT, IBT, Roadcraft the Police Manual, Goals for Driver Education GDE, Matrix (Hatakka, et al 2002), Monash University Accident Research Centre MUARC and TRLs incorrect Reference Books, while

<![if !supportLists]>·        <![endif]>ESDS is a voluntary standard with no statutory footing, so

<![if !supportLists]>·        <![endif]>Which TRL stopping formula does the RSA, Gardai and ADI trainers use when delivering ESDS

Garda and the RSA statistics show seat belts at 25%, Mobile Phones at 25%, Distraction at 30%, Speed at 33%, Alcohol at 38% as the main causes of fatalites although only 0.5% of drivers stopped are over the alcohol limit and Speed enforcement and Towing services are amongst the biggest Garda expenses each year.

Gardai and the RSA blame elected Councillors for setting incorrect speed limits and claim that they have no control over this. However, the 2.7m licenced drivers are issued with 1m penalty points annually as a road safety measure in case they might crash in the future.

One penalty point is issued for failing to turn left onto a roundabout, two penalty points for driving against the flow of traffic on a motorway and three penalty points for failure to wear a safety belt. Five of the 62 penalty points offences relate to Safety Belts which remain on a licence for 3 years.

<![if !supportLists]>·        <![endif]>Insurance Companies calculate the driver risk based on penalty points on a driving licence.

The use of Segways or Personal Powered Transport PPT by Gardai, RSA and TRL

On 31 10 2012, Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey launched the new Garda Segways in Dublin.

On 13 11 2012, Gardai had to get permission from the RSA to use Segways in a public place as they were deemed to be illegal, according to the RSA spokesman Brian Farrell. Did the RSA have such Authority?

In 2018, Segways were withdrawn from service by the Gardai as they were expensive to maintain, more dangerous than bikes to ride as steering was done by balance and not suited to all Gardai.

In 2019, the Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport, Mr. Shane Ross, in considering whether to amend existing legislation to deal with the emergence of PPTs on our roads, requested the Road Safety Authority RSA to conduct research into the use of eScooters and similar vehicles.

The RSA commissioned TRL to conduct the research.

On 12 06 2019, TRL produced a 46-page Report PPR912 based on a Review of Literature and concluded that more research is necessary. However, Both the RSA and TRL recommended that the legislation be amended.

Recognising that the RSA, TRL and the Gardai encountered difficulties in carrying out their research due to a lack of robust evidence being available the Minister decided to initiate a two-month public consultation.

The RSA prepared the 11 Public Consultation Questions, but Gardai who had used Segways since 2012 and different stopping distances to the RSA were not consulted.

The 11 Public Consultation Questions on Personal Power Transport PPT are as follows:

Question 1: What category of stakeholder do you represent (e.g. private, company, organization etc)?

Question 2: Do you think that the use of PPTs should be permitted in Ireland and why?

Question 3: Are there any types of PPTs (e.g. Segways, eScooters, electric unicycles etc) that you think should not be permitted to be used and why?

Question 4: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that they should have some form of identification (i.e. a registration plate/marking)?

Question 5: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that users should (a) be of a minimum age (if yes – what age?) and (b) have some form of licence covering their use (e.g. category AM driving licence - mopeds)?

Question 6: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that their use should be covered by some form of insurance (i.e. liability cover)?

Question 7: If the use of PPTs is to be permitted do you think that can be used on (a) footpaths, (b) cycle lanes (c) bus lanes (d) normal traffic lanes?

Question 8: If the use of PPTs is to be permitted do you think that they should be restricted to (i) a maximum speed (if yes - please suggest such a maximum speed) and (ii) only used on roads with a maximum speed limit of (a) 30kph, (b) 40kph or (c) 50kph?

Question 9: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that users should be required to wear (a) protective head-gear, (b) high-visibility clothing (i.e. be mandatory)?

Question 10: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that users should (a) have some form of training, (b) if so, by who?

Question 11: If the use of PPTs on our roads is to be permitted do you think that it should be left to local authorities to decide whether or not to regulate their use in their respective functional areas?

The Public Consultation for the Government Road Strategy Ireland 2021 - 2030

What we would like to know

We invite your views on the following main themes:

Theme 1: What should Ireland’s road safety priorities be for the next 10 years?

Theme 2: How do you think these priorities should be addressed?

Theme 3: Is there any part of the government’s current Road Safety Strategy 2013 – 2020 that we should consider when planning the government’s next Road Safety Strategy?

Theme 4: What can we learn from others?

Theme 5: Do you have any other comments?

 

Road Strategy Ireland 1998 - 2030

Since 1998, TRL is the source of the information for the four Government Road Strategies 1998 to 2020 and the Development of the Government’s Road Safety Strategy 2021 – 2030 conducted by the RSA who claim they don’t have the 1998 or 2004 Strategy as this was a period before the RSA was established

As the FOI Rules stand, it appears the RSA and Gardai may be justified in withholding information by claiming it is not available, as is outlined in the response to my final Appeal to the Office of the Information Commissioner in case number: OIC-103671-M4YH5 Mr Y and the Road Safety Authority’ published on-line, however

In 2021 Police continue to crash their vehicles, one in four drivers are issued with penalty points, retired Police Officers join the RSA and TRL as experts and some even set up their very own Speed Detection and Red-Light Camera Companies, like Road Safety Support.

It may be for technical, legal, or financial reasons that the RSA, TRL and the UK Government refuse to admit to their mistakes as Police crash their entire fleet every 4.5 years and fatalities continue in Ireland as follows:

Year

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

2020

20 07 2021

Garda car crashes

639

598

613

682

602

667

625

561

561e

not available

Road Deaths Ireland South

162

188

193

162

186

158

149

148

149

66

Road Deaths Ireland North

54

48

57

79

74

68

55

56

56

24

Frank Cullinane

21 07 2021

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