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Road Safety Alert For Freezing Conditions

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The Road Safety Authority (RSA) is advising all road users to prepare for cold weather conditions as Met Eireann have issued a warning for cold temperatures and with sharp or severe frosts and icy patches expected. This will lead to hazardous conditions on roads and footpaths. With the spell of mild weather in Ireland over the past couple of weeks, it presents a particular danger as road users are accustomed to the current driving conditions and will have to adjust to icy roads. Road users are being advised to check local traffic and weather conditions before setting out on any journeys. The RSA has the following practical advice for road users to cope with the ice conditions:

Drivers are advised to:

· Clear windows and mirrors before you set out, use a screen scraper and de-icer. Do not use hot water on the windscreen as it can crack the glass.
· In icy conditions, slow down, use all controls delicately and leave extra distance between you and the vehicle in front. Avoid over steering and harsh braking and harsh acceleration. Use the highest gear possible to avoid wheel spin. Select a low gear when travelling downhill especially if through bends.
· Watch out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists and allow extra space when overtaking them.
For a copy of the RSA’s ‘Top 10 tips for driving in icy conditions’ click here.

Pedestrians are advised in Icy conditions to:

· Wear appropriate footwear. Walk on the footpath, not in the street. Walk on the right-hand side of the road, facing traffic if there are no footpaths.
· DO NOT underestimate the danger of ice. Many slips and falls happen in places people regard as safe and secure, typically outside their front door, on the doorstep, on the path or while getting out of the car. When you approach a footpath or roadway that appears to be covered with snow or ice, always use extreme caution.

For a copy of the RSA’s ‘Top 10 tips to avoid a fall or slip in snow or icy conditions’ click here.