CLARE County Council has been urged to introduce traffic calming at a “very dangerous” crossroads near O’Brien’ s Bridge to avert a potential fatality.
The call was made this week by O’Brien’s Bridge Community Group chairperson, Margaret O’Connor, who said it is essential this crossroads is made safe.
The crossroads serves motorists travelling from Limerick to Killaloe and O’Brien’s Bridge to Bridgetown and Broadford.
Ms O’Connor outlined this junction can be blind for any motorist exiting from O’Brien’ s Bridge, particularly if they are travelling to Bridgetown because they have to travel far out in the middle of the road with the risk of being hit by a car travelling at speed from the Killaloe or Limerick direction.
She pointed out some motorists drive at high speed travelling from Killaloe to Limerick because they view it as a straight road.
“From day one, I felt it was not safe. If you were a pedestrian or on a bike, you wouldn’t cross the crossroads in a million years. Even in a car, you are taking your life in your hands.
“A lot of people have telephoned me in the last few weeks about this junction where there have been a few near misses.
“One of the parents who rang me was afraid her car would be cut in half when she made the crossing to get on to the Bridgetown road because of the speed or traffic calming measure.
“All the residents are concerned this crossroads are lethal, particularly those who are driving to and from Bridgetown National School. There is only a sign for a junction coming from the Killaloe side and the slow marking is almost obliterated.
She is being supported by Deputy Violet-Anne Wynne, who has called on Clare County Council to carry out a safety audit on the O’Brien’s Bridge crossroads.
“On a recent visit to O’Briens Bridge the residents’ association highlighted the safety concerns of this junction to me.
“Only an hour previously I had seen a near miss on the junction myself.
“I believe that the Clare County Council need to carry out a safety audit of this crossroads to ensure that no (further) accidents or near misses happens here.
“In the meantime, I have also asked the council to urgently address the issues of the faded road markings to make the layout of the junction clearer to drivers,” she said.
Clare County Council confirmed the Killaloe Municipal District office will be nominating this location for a Low Cost Safety Scheme grant in 2021.
“In order to qualify for this grant a history of road traffic accidents will need to be identified along with an engineering solution. As with all potential works, the final outcome will be determined by available budgets.
“The current road markings will be upgraded this year,” said a council spokesman.