Luas warns jaywalkers and cyclists that only seconds could change lives

By Mary Dennehy

LUAS operator Transdev has this week launched an appeal to motorists, pedestrians and cyclists, after tram contacts with both pedestrians and vehicles “slightly increased” since the start of the year.

The city tram service, which is 15 years old this month, had 25 contacts with vehicles, nine with pedestrians and one with a cyclist as it travelled 4.29 million kilometres in 2018.

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A cyclists crossing the Luas line (Photo courtesy of Transdev)

However, according to Transdev, tram contacts with both pedestrians and vehicles have “slightly increased” between January and April of this year – with 14 contacts with vehicles recorded and seven contacts with pedestrians (two fatalities).

In a safety message issued this week, Transdev reminded people that Luas trams travel on a fixed track and cannot swerve, requiring time to break and stop.

“Luas Drivers continually report the same incidents; pedestrians jaywalking, never looking left and right, often with headphones in and heads down, motorists and cyclists breaking red lights”, a spokesperson for Transdev said.

“Not breaking red lights and crossing roads and tramways carefully are basic rules of the road which, when broken, can prove fatal.”

Transdev has released CCTV footage in a bid to raise awareness around the dangers posed when motorists and cyclists break red lights or pedestrians walk out in front of oncoming trams – and to remember that “only seconds could change their lives”.

Seamus Egan, Managing Director of Transdev, said: “People have become familiar with Luas, and with familiarity sometimes comes complacency.

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“A tram is on a fixed track, it cannot swerve, and it needs more time to break than a road vehicle.

“Motorists, who often visibly speed up to cross a road junction as opposed to slowing down, need to be more mindful of the potential consequences of their actions.

“Not only is the motorist gambling with his or her life and the lives of others, a collision with a tram results in significant delays to, or curtailment of service for Luas customers.

“When a collision with a tram does occur, Luas passengers are left waiting for the Emergency services to deal with the incident before the all-clear can be given for the Luas service to resume.”

For further details visit the Luas Website or follow Luas on Facebook.

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