While young children and teenagers are learning from home during the COVID-19 schools closure periods, why not add road safety and cycle safety to your list of learning tools and tutorials at home. Even teaching your kids the very basis of the ‘Safe Cross Code’ can help save a life.
Below are some useful posters and guidelines which you can teach children about on how to cross a road safely, using traffic signals, cycling safely and travelling in a vehicle safely. You can discuss these topics with your child and explain the reasons why these safety mechanisms are in place and why we all need to be extra careful while using the roads.
KCC - Travelling Safely
KCC - Cycling Safely
KCC - Using Zebra Crossings
KCC - Using a Pelican Crossing
KCC - Crossing at Traffic Islands
KCC - Crossing between parked cars
KCC - School goers guide to road safety
The Road Safety, Cycling and Sustainable Transport Officer (RCSTO) is responsible for the delivery of the council’s role and responisbilities under three categories:
Road Safety, Cycling and also Sustainable Transport. While a broader outline of each section of the role is listed on the menus on the left, below is a brief synopsis of the role and responsibilities of the RCSTO.
Road Safety –
School Warden Service (Management, Training, Safety, PPE and Payroll)
Preparing, promoting and assisting in the implementation of the Road Safety Plan
Liaising with RSA, LARSO, AGS and other Stakeholders
Initiating and promoting road safety campaigns and projects
Deliver road safety education in schools and throughout the community
Organise and deliver annual AXA Road Safety Roadshow for TY/LCA & Youth Groups
Promote safer cycling and cycle awareness
Service and support the Kildare Cycle Forum
Arrange and provide Cycle Training at schools
Assess schools and students in cycle proficiency and knowledge
Organise cycleways and greenways promotional events
Organise and promote annual Bike Week events
Sustainable Transport –
Support Mobility Management Initiatives and other initiatives which support greater use of walking, cycling and public transport.
Promote current Greenways and Blueways
Prepare grant funding applications for new Greenway and Blueway schemes
Promote Active Travel and Smarter Travel initiatives
Liaise with Kildare Fáilte, Kildare Tourism, Schools Network and other stakeholders to promote and support Green & Blueway tours and water based events and activities.
Organise and promote annual EU Mobility Week events in Kildare and co-ordinate sustainable transport initiatives during EU Mobility Week and other related EU, National, regional, and local events as required.
Support the Kildare Regional Climate Action Office in sustainable transport initiatives
Any other such other duties that may be assigned from time to time
Is Your Journey Absolutely Necessary?
In extreme weather conditions you should ask yourself if making a journey by road is absolutely necessary. You might consider delaying your trip until the weather and road conditions improve or use public transport where available. If your journey is unavoidable you should be prepared. Ensure your vehicle has a more than adequate supply of fuel for the journey. Allow extra time and drive with caution. Let someone know your route and when you expect to arrive. Check to see if there are any problems on your intended route before setting out on a journey. Listen to TV or radio bulletins and check the weather forecast. Remember that the best road conditions are likely to occur between 10am and 4pm.
Is Your Vehicle Winter-Ready?
Check your vehicle’s owner’s manual and find out if it has any safety assist technology e.g. ABS
In prolonged icy or snowy driving conditions it is advisable to carry a fully charged mobile phone and have the following in the boot of the car:
Motoring Tips in Snow and Ice
If your vehicle begins to skid you should:
Motoring Tips in Strong Wind
Motoring Tips in Severe Flooding
Motoring Tips in Fog
Advice to Pedestrians
Advice to Motorcyclists / Cyclists
With the increase in people out walking, jogging or cycling on local roads, ‘sun glare’ can cause vision impairment issues for some motorists, which in turn can pose a risk to those using the road. Sun glare in some areas can prevent a person from being visible to drivers and all too often, motorists who encounter a person unexpectedly on the side of a road may have to break hard or swerve to avoid them.
Using sunglasses is always a good start in combating the effect of sun glare.
Kildare County Council is reminding people who use the road to be more aware of their environment and the roads they are using and be mindful of any sun glare spots which may cause a shadow and sometimes ‘hide’ the person, resulting in some motorists having to take evasion action.
Declan Keogh, Road Safety, Cycling and Sustainable Transport Officer said: “Everyone is taking advantage of quieter roads and local roads so they can exercise within their 5km radius, however, these are areas where people may not be too familiar with for their walks or a cycle which also means they may not be fully aware of the risks associated with those roads. Continue exercising, but be mindful that sun glare spots may occur, which can basically hide your presence on the road, so just be mindful of your surrounding and listen out for approaching vehicles and take action to avoid any incidents.”
The following are guidelines for drivers to combat sun glare:
Kildare’s Christmas Road Safety campaign continues until 5th January 2021. The Kildare Garda Roads Policing Unit is engaging in Mandatory Intoxicant Testing checkpoints at various locations across County Kildare. The checkpoints will operate around the clock.
While traffic volumes have reduced by 70% at times during this year, there has been a 133% increase in detections for drug driving. The Kildare Joint Policing Committee and the Kildare Road Safety Working Group are appealing to road users to be responsible and use the roads safely and wisely over the festive season.
Inspector Tony Connaughton of the Naas District said gardaí can stop a motorist randomly at a checkpoint and test them for an intoxicant. If the driver proves positive for alcohol or drugs, they can be arrested and brought to the local garda station for processing.
“When a driver is detected at a testing checkpoint, we can stop a motorist randomly driving through. To test for alcohol, we can do a breath test and to test for the presence of drugs we will do an oral fluid test.” If the person proves positive for either of those tests, they will be arrested and brought to the local garda station where a specimen will be provided. If the specimen comes back positive and above the thresholds set out, that person will be prosecuted and on conviction in the District Court they will receive a disqualification from driving and a criminal conviction, all of which may lead to issues of employment or future travel plans for that person.
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not just illegal and dangerous, it can also lead to other consequences for many other people. If people are involved in a collision, because of the actions of an impaired driver, those peoples’ lives are affected also.
Kildare’s Road Safety Officer Declan Keogh is appealing to people to drivers to be safe and sober while driving and for passengers to also be aware of the drivers’ actions. “We’re asking drivers to be safe and sober of any alcohol or drugs while driving, and for any other person who is getting into a vehicle with a driver, that they themselves know that the driver is safe and sober of alcohol or drugs, and above all for every single person in the vehicle to wear their seatbelt and for the driver to drive within the speed limit.”
Pedestrians and cyclist are also reminded to become more visible and alert while using the roads.