Increased penalty points from 1st August

Paschal Donohue TD

Paschal Donohue TD
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In a press release issued today, the Minister for Transport, Paschal Donohoe TD, announced the introduction of increased penalty points from 1st August 2014.

As we previously reported, changes are being introduced under the Road Traffic Act 2014 and include an increase in points for using a mobile phone while driving. That offence will now attract 3 points (previously 2) as well as an €80 fine.

Commenting on the announcement, MAG Ireland P.R.O. Victor Donnelly said:

MAG Ireland has pushed hard for a stronger deterrent to end the lethal practice of using mobiles while driving, and we are delighted to see our efforts have helped to bring about a change in the law which will benefit everyone who uses Irish roads, particularly vulnerable road users – pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.

The measures announced are part of a package of changes which include an increase in points for speeding and not wearing a seatbelt, both of which will now attract 3 penalty points.

Another key change from August 1st will be the introduction of “N” plates for novice road users. Novices will be required to display an N-plate during the first two years after passing their test. In the case of motorcyclists, this means a mandatory high visibility vest displaying an “N” plate attached front and rear. This represents the first time riders have been forced to wear mandatory high visibility clothing after they have passed a test.

Commenting on the situation, MAG Ireland’s Victor Donnelly said:

It’s important to understand that the novice rules only apply to the first test passed in any category. A person who has previously gained a full car license for example, will not be considered a novice road user if they subsequently pass a motorcycle test, and will not be required to wear an “N” vest in that case.

Like “L” drivers, “N” drivers will face disqualification from driving for six months if they reach seven penalty points, as opposed to the current twelve and will be subject to a lower alcohol limit.

Further increases in penalty points for other road traffic offences are due to be introduced before the end of the year.

Ahead of the Bank Holiday weekend Minister Donohoe said:

I am calling on all road users to exercise greater care and caution on the roads. These new measures will put road safety at the top of people’s minds and, I hope, bring about a greater culture of compliance with our life saving rules of the roads. It must be remembered that the penalty points system is a preventative road safety measure. If you don’t want to get points on your licence or a fine, then don’t speed, don’t use your mobile phone while driving and always wear your seatbelt, ensuring others in the car, particularly children are wearing theirs too.

MAG Ireland urges riders to be extra vigilant over the bank holiday weekend as many motorists will be travelling on unfamiliar roads. We encourage riders to be pro-active by always making sure you wear appropriate motorcycle clothing and never assume a driver has seen you.