»»Over 4,400 incidents... in just two years »»Motorway’s users faced up to 4hr delays »»Major event is reported 31 times on road »»Wandering& dead animals caused chaos
MORE than 4,400 accidents and incidents were reported on our busiest motorway in less than two years.
Crashes and breakdowns on Dublin’s M50 ring road regularly bring traffic to a standstill with lengthy queues a daily fact of life for commuters. The scale of problems are revealed in a database of incidents, which show more than 200 reports of accidents, debris, tyre blow-outs and other potentially-lethal incidents every month. Transport Infrastructure Ireland’s Sean O’neill said their figures gave an insight into the challenges of managing the country’s busiest route. He added: “As more people are using the road, [there is] statistically a greater chance of an incident happening. There has been a significant increase in the number of people using the road, 5% to 6% growth in line with economic activity. The impact of each event is also greater, because getting resources to an incident takes more time as we try to work with local authorities, gardai, and the fire brigade.” Thirty-one “major incidents” were reported with another 737 classified as “high priority”. The major incidents included collisions, breakdowns, vehicles on fire, and an instance of a cyclist or pedestrian on the road. Some caused chaos on the road for up to four hours, according to the database. “High priority” events occurred at a rate of at least one a day with most of them caused by collisions, cars breaking down or debris on the road surface. On four occasions animals were wandering on the motorway though just one dead animal was reported. Cars were abandoned dangerously on the M50 four times and there were 18 separate “high priority” incidents involving cyclists or pedestrians. A driver fell seriously ill at the wheel four times while other incidents categorised as “high priority” included trucks spilling loads on four occasions and one instance in which a car was driven the wrong direction. More than 1,900 “moderate priority” and 1,700 “low priority” incidents were also reported on the road. Breakdowns were the most common problem with 1,897 reported since the beginning of 2016, a rate of about three every day. There were just over 1,000 collisions, at least one a day, while debris caused problems on 583 occasions. Sixty-one drivers ran out of fuel on the motorway while, on 36 occasions, a car went on fire. There were 15 instances of drivers making emergency calls from the roadside but giving no response once their call was put through. Thirteen drivers got hopelessly lost and had to pull in to try to get directions while five drivers reported witnessing “illegal activities” on the route. There was one hazardous chemical incident reported and one instance of anti-social behaviour in the database. Mr O’neill added: “People are hopping on and off the M50. They use it as a rat run around the local network. It is a challenging but manageable national road. It’s the most critical economic corridor in the country.”
Major incidents are commonplace Drivers faced lengthy delays on M50 TAILBACKS