The tragic loss of lives on Ulster’s roads should be a wake-up call to everyone, the Head of Road Policing said yesterday.
Speaking at a press conference, called after five deaths in as many days in the Province, Superintendent Gerry Murray said: “Since the start of the year 40 people have lost their lives on our roads and within the last 24 hours the family and friends of two more people are grieving the loss of a loved one.
“The sad reality is that many of the deaths and serious injuries on our roads could be avoided.
“Speed is the number one cause of fatal collisions so we really need people to understand that by slowing down and altering their speed to suit the conditions of the road they can potentially save a life. As well as slowing down we need drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists to pay more attention, to respect other road users, and to take personal responsibility for their own safety.”
Environment Minister Mark H Durkan offered his sincere sympathies to the families of those who have died.
He said the “increase in road deaths this year highlights that using the roads is the most dangerous thing that most of us do most days”.
On Tuesday evening two men were killed when a motorbike and car collided in south Belfast. Earlier that day a 51-year-old woman was killed in Magherafelt and a biker who lost his life in Carrickfergus on Monday was named as Mark McClements from Whitehead.
At the weekend 18-year-old David McNulty died close to the village of Garrison in Co Fermanagh.
Two children were taken to hospital after road collisions in Belfast [six-year-old boy] and Londonderry [12-year-old girl] on Tuesday.
Last night the boy was in a stable condition in the Royal Victoria. On Tuesday the PSNI said the girl’s injuries were “not life-threatening”.