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‘Make Way Day’ marked with new campaign

 The Road Safety Authority (RSA) and An Garda Síochána are supporting the Disability Federation of Ireland’s ‘Make Way Day’ on Friday 24 September with an illegal parking on footpaths and cycle lanes campaign. The campaign reminds drivers that parking on footpaths and blocking cycle lanes is an offence and poses a road safety risk to vulnerable road users.

Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton commented on the campaign’s launch, ‘Illegal parking forces wheelchair users, the visually impaired, people with buggies, children and older pedestrians who do not have adequate room to walk safely on footpaths, out onto the road. Illegal parking in cycle lanes forces cyclists out into mainstream traffic, where there is an increased risk of a collision occurring. I welcome initiatives such as ‘Make Way Day’ which focuses attention on need for drivers to be more considerate and socially responsible when parking.’

The RSA and Garda Síochána’s digital and social media campaign, which is running all this week in support of ‘Make Way Day’, calls on all motorists to understand the impact illegal parking can have on other road users. The message to drivers is ‘If You Don’t Move, We Can’t’.

Mr Sam Waide, CEO of the RSA also spoke on the campaign saying: “We are delighted to support the Disability Federation of Ireland’s ‘Make Way Day’. We are urging drivers to think of the very real consequences illegal parking can have on vulnerable road users and particularly those with disabilities. If a motorist parks illegally it can often force these road users out into traffic to try and navigate around the obstruction which exposes them to the risk of injury or worse. That’s why we are calling on motorists to park responsibly.”

Chief Superintendent Michael Hennebry, Garda National Roads Policing Bureau said: ‘Make Way Day’ which takes place this Friday 24 September, is a timely reminder to drivers that parking on footpaths or cycle lanes is illegal and poses a threat to the safety of the most vulnerable in our communities. An Garda Síochána will be actively supporting ‘Make Way Day’ by enforcing parking regulations where necessary.”

While most local authorities employ traffic wardens to enforce parking regulations and issue fines, members of An Garda Síochána also have this authority. In addition to fixed charges for breaching parking regulations, a driver can also be liable for penalty points.

If a driver has parked in a dangerous position, they could incur ‘penalty points’ up to a maximum of (5) on conviction and a ‘fixed charge’ ranging from €80 – €120. Driving in a ‘mandatory’ cycle lane is also an offence which can incur up to a maximum of (3) penalty points on conviction and a ‘fixed charge’ ranging from €60 – €90.