Dáil Éireann - Volume 649 - 04 March, 2008
Written Answers. - Road Safety.
Deputy Kathleen Lynch Deputy Kathleen Lynch
Deputy Kathleen Lynch asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the amount spent by his Department during 2007 for the provision of speed cameras; the amount allocated for 2008; the number of such cameras installed during 2007; the number expected to be provided during 2008; if his attention has been drawn to the concerns expressed recently by the chairperson of the Road Safety Authority at the delays in providing such cameras; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8996/08]
Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Deputy Thomas P. Broughan
Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the reason Garda contracts for speed detection cameras remain unfilled; the number of con tracts that remain unfilled; the value of each contract; the amount of money that has been allocated for the national rollout of speed cameras; the amount that has been spent to date; the current final estimate for the total cost of the national rollout; the number of speed cameras that have been deployed to date in the national rollout; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3381/08]
Deputy Bernard Allen Deputy Bernard Allen
Deputy Bernard Allen asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform when it is expected that the national speed camera network will be put in place; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9078/08]
Deputy Jimmy Deenihan Deputy Jimmy Deenihan
Deputy Jimmy Deenihan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform when, in view of the fact that the Government has approved funding for speed cameras, the successful contractor will be announced; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9190/08]
Deputy Brian Lenihan Deputy Brian Lenihan
Deputy Brian Lenihan: I propose to take Questions Nos. 119, 121, 159 and 516 together.
A tender process for procuring an outsourced safety camera network is under way. During this process issues arose because it emerged that costs involved would be substantially higher than had been estimated when the matter was considered by Government previously, which necessitated a further examination of the matter by the Government. The Government has confirmed that it will be proceeding with the outsourcing of a countrywide safety camera network and the financial resources necessary to do so will be provided. The tender process is at an advanced stage, and it is expected that contract negotiations with the preferred bidder will commence shortly. I am not in a position to indicate at this time the cost of the project as the tender process is not complete.
Enforcement of road traffic law is one of the highest priorities of An Garda Síochána. They are continuing to focus their enforcement activity on the main causes of road deaths and serious injuries — speeding, drink driving and the non-wearing of seatbelts and also on road transport offences. The financial resources allocated to traffic related duties increased from €3.7 million in 2007 to €11 million in this year’s Estimates, in addition to the amount which will be allocated for the safety camera network. An Garda Síochána were recently authorised to replace the GATSO systems currently operating with eight new state of the art mobile speed cameras. These will be operational not later than June. This will take place against the background of an increase in the Garda Traffic Corps of 170 this year and 225 last year, bringing the strength of the Corps to 1,200 by end of the year.
In addition, approval has also been given for the Gardaí to acquire an Automated Number Plate Recognition System for up to 100 Garda vehicles, which among many features, will have a speed detection capability. Gardaí will also continue to use over 400 hand held detection devices available to them.
Saving lives through making our roads safer, including through taking effective, efficient and targeted measures to reduce speeding, in line with the Road Safety Strategy will remain an absolute priority for me and the Government.
Dáil Éireann 649 Written Answers. Road Safety.