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Dublin: 4°C Thursday 13 May 2021

These fantastic people are making our roads safer every day

Heart-warming stories of community outreach from the Road Safety Authority’s Leading Light Awards.

THIS YEAR, FOR the first time in eight years, we have seen an increase in death on our roads.

Michael Rowland, Director of Road Safety Research and Education with the RSA, commented last week that “we all have the power to make a big difference. And now, more than ever, we need to redouble our efforts to keep our roads free from tragedy.”

Our own personal potential for improving road safety is clear in the annual Irish Road Safety Week’s Leading Light Awards. The Leading Lights celebrate the outstanding efforts of individuals to improve road safety in their communities, making the roads safer for everyone.

Last December at Farmleigh saw 36 awards presented to entrants from around the country. The winners all made their local communities safer through outreach, creativity, and taking personal responsibility. The awards are given out across a broad spectrum in the community – including education, training, public sector workers, the media and more. Here are just a few examples of the deserving winners.

The Education – Pre-school Award

Some happy pupils from Bizzy Bees. Source: Marc O'Sullivan

This award was presented to Bizzy Bees pre-school in Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan. The pre-school is committed to teaching their children all about road safety. They engage the pupils with activities based around road safety every single day, aiming to instil a sense of awareness from a young age.

The Road Safety Officer Award

Eamonn Brown receiving his Award from Gay Byrne, RSA's Chairman. Source: Marc O'Sullivan

Eamonn Brown of Donegal County Council was Road Safety Officer from 2006 to 2012, during which time he produced two road safety plans. Not only did he manage the Donegal Road Safety Together Working Group, he also oversaw countless school programmes, roadshows and conferences. In 2011, the number of road deaths in Donegal fell by 20%.

Special Recognition Award

Mary Magan and family with her Leading Light Award, presented by Gay Byrne. Source: Marc O'Sullivan

Several Special Recognition Awards were handed out on the day to several worthy winners, including School Warden Mary Magan. Mary worked for 36 years at St. Paul’s National School in Limerick, retiring in 2012. She is well-known for her enthusiasm for the role, and was the very first School Warden the school ever had.

Not only did Mary help the children cross safely every morning and afternoon, but she also made sure to be there for every match and event the school put on – truly going above and beyond her duties for road safety.

Do you know someone that deserves a Leading Light Award from the Road Safety Authority? The competition is open for entries here.

Read: Tell us, what’s your top fatigue-busting road safety tip?>

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Road Safety Authority

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