Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Fewer children killed on roads

The number of children killed on the state's roads has fallen by 45 per cent over 12 years

The number of children killed on the country's roads has fallen 45% over 12 years, new figures have revealed.

Some 246 youngsters up to the age of 14 lost their lives between 1997 and 2009, with another 1,013 seriously injured.

The Road Safety Authority said the bulk of those were killed outside built-up areas where the speed limit on the roads was higher than 60km/h.

Transport Minister Leo Varadkar stressed the importance of teaching children about road safety.

"Next week, schools will reopen after the summer holidays and will welcome new students," said Mr Varadkar.

"One of the most important lessons for young children is how to use the roads safely.

"As adults, we have a responsibility to show young road-users the correct way to behave when walking, cycling or travelling to school by bus or car.

"So I would ask parents, guardians and teachers to teach young children how to be road safety-aware when using the roads."

The RSA's Child Casualties Report reveals that child fatalities decreased 45.6% between 1997 and 2009, with a 36% drop in pedestrian deaths, a 60% fall in cyclist deaths and 73% drop in children killed while passengers in a vehicle.

One in four of all child deaths happened in Dublin and Cork, the figures showed.

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