JUST 19 collisions have been recorded along the A4 dual carriageway since the landmark road project opened to traffic six years ago.
This newspaper previously revealed how just eight road incidents were recorded on the A4 in the last three years. Now the PSNI have confirmed that the total number of crashes on the 13 mile stretch numbered just 19 since the entire dual carriageway opened on November 17, 2010.
The vast majority of the collisions (17) have been categorised as ‘slight’ by the PSNI. The remaining two have been classed as fatal by police. None were categorised as ‘serious collisions’.
The A4 was once considered one of the most dangerous single lane carriageways in Ireland.
In the six years leading up to the opening of the full dual carriageway, the PSNI recorded 97 collisions on the A4.
Tragically, nine people lost their lives on the road during those years.
While two people have died on the new dual carriageway in the past six years, 90 per-cent of all collisions have been classed as minor.
Of the 31 people injured in road crashes on the A4 dual carriageway between November, 17 2010 and April, 30 2016, 28 suffered only minor ailments.
Just one person was seriously hurt, although another two people did ultimately lose their lives.
The majority of those injured (22) were behind the wheel. Seven were passengers.
By rough comparison, there were at least 259 collisions on the entire A5 road between Derry and Aughnacloy in the period between January 2010 and March 31, 2016.
The figures confirm that the 16 mile section between Strabane and Omagh remains the most dangerous, with 99 road crashes during those six years.
Significantly, the figure is higher than the 97 collisions recorded on the notorious old A4 road in the six years before the dual carriageway opened.
Both roads were virtually the same length.
Although the most dangerous section of the A5 and without any overtaking lanes, the Omagh to Strabane section of the A5 has attracted the most opposition.
Some key members of the Alternative A5 Alliance, which opposes the scheme, own land along the route.
Subject to the outcome of the latest public inquiry, the Derry to Strabane section should proceed towards the end of 2017, with the Omagh to Ballygawley section following.
But question marks still lie over the Strabane to Omagh section, with funding still to be found.
A total of 22 people have died on the A5 since the Northern Ireland Executive first agreed to proceed with the dual carriageway proposal in July 2007.
The Strabane to Omagh route claimed nine lives during that period, an average of one every year.
Seven have died between Omagh and Ballygawley, with four fatal tragedies between Derry and Strabane. Two people have lost their lives on the A5 Ballygawley to Aughnacloy section.
Posted: 3:21 pm August 23, 2016
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