PSNI chiefs are reminding road users to take personal responsibility for their own safety following an upsurge in road deaths in recent days.
Head of Road Policing Superintendent Gerry Murray said “the tragic loss of lives on our roads this year has to be a wake up call to everyone in Northern Ireland”.
He 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.”
Supt Murray said “people need to start really thinking about the consequences of their actions”.
“Bikers, drivers, cyclists and pedestrians all have the right to use the road but with that right is a responsibility to do so safely. As a Police Service we are routinely and actively on the lookout for people who are likely to cause a collision but enforcing the law is not the only answer to reducing road deaths. We all have a part to play.
“So before you get behind the wheel of a car today, get on your bicycle or motorcycle, or stick on your running shoes, stop and think - how many people have to die on our roads before you decide to take greater care?”
Environment Minister Mark H Durkan offered his sincere sympathies to the families of those who have died.
“The increase in road deaths this year highlights that using the roads is the most dangerous thing that most of us do most days,” he said. “Whenever we use the roads, we all need to keep our focus at all times and ensure that we adopt safe and appropriate behaviours.
“By treating the road as a shared space and taking care, we can all reduce the risk of being involved in a collision.”