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Road death toll lowest on record

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Leo Varadkar praised motorists after just nine pople were killed in Ireland's roads last month, the fewest since records began in 1959

Leo Varadkar praised motorists after just nine pople were killed in Ireland's roads last month, the fewest since records began in 1959

Leo Varadkar praised motorists after just nine pople were killed in Ireland's roads last month, the fewest since records began in 1959

The number of people killed on Irish roads last month was the lowest on record.

Provisional figures show that nine people lost their lives, the smallest number since records began in 1959.

Transport Minister Leo Varadkar praised motorists for driving safely.

"While one death is one too many it is very important that we acknowledge the efforts of all road users in making April 2011 the safest on record," said Mr Varadkar.

"Your efforts to improve road safety, and to protect communities, have saved many lives. I would again appeal to everyone to please re-double your efforts and continue this life-saving behaviour."

Road Safety Authority chief Noel Brett said the figure reflected the seismic change in attitude by the public towards road safety. Previously the lowest monthly recorded figure was in December 2010 when 10 people lost their lives. So far this year 66 people have been killed on the roads.

"For the last five years road deaths have dropped year on year," Mr Brett said. "Last year a total of 213 died on our roads.

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"This year we should all aim to get road deaths below 200. Unfortunately the number of people being killed and injured on our roads is the only way we can measure success in road safety. So I would appeal to everyone in this country to really dig deep and make a major effort to save lives on our roads this year."

Assistant Garda Commissioner John Twomey urged motorists to continue to be vigilant as May last year recorded the second highest number of fatalities in 2010.

"Please redouble your efforts and lets work to ensure that more families are spared that dreaded knock on the door and that shattering news that one split second on our roads can bring," he said.


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