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‘She paid with her life’: Family of Brazilian carer killed while cycling calls for safer Dublin roads

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The family of Brazilian carer Josilaine Ribeiro, who was killed at Dolphin’s Barn bridge last month while cycling to visit a patient, have called for road safety improvements in Dublin.

A message from Ms Ribeiro’s family, read at a vigil on Wednesday evening by the Calm Crumlin Road campaign, urged a “more humane” attitude to road safety, and for authorities to “take actions” to keep vulnerable road users safe.

The vigil was held to mark a month since Ms Ribeiro’s death after she was struck by a truck at the bridge on the Crumlin Road.

“It is our deepest desire that her sacrifice helps the Dublin population to have better and safer roads,” the message signed by Ms Ribeiro’s mother, sisters and partner read. “We hope her memory and her tragedy makes people think twice about the everlasting consequences of not caring for each other. She paid with her life so hopefully other people and families don’t have to go through such an intense and piercing pain,” it said.

“May her beloved soul rest in peace and the memory of her beautiful heart helps the people of Ireland and Dublin to be more humane, and the rulers and administrators to take actions that would help keep our Irish brothers and sisters safe.”

Speed surveys on Lower Crumlin Road and at the Bridge over the Grand Canal at Dolphin’s Barn undertaken as part of the UCD WeCount Traffic Impact data project in the six months before Ms Ribeiro’s death found more than 100 cars an hour were breaking the speed limits.

On average, over the course of a day, 83 cars per hour travelled at speeds over 50 kph, 22 cars in excess of 60 kph, and nine cars every hour were recorded speeding at more than 70 Kmph.

Schools, sports and community organisations, and local residents have for several years campaigned for improved safety for vulnerable road users, particularly for children walking and cycling to school.

“For too long our community has been viewed as a corridor in or out of the city, not as a place where people live. The roads are increasingly unsafe for those walking and cycling in our community,” the Calm Crumlin Road campaign group said in a letter to Dublin City Council.

The design of the road and its junctions “leads many drivers to see this area as somewhere to be traversed as quickly as possible” it said.

“We are calling on you to immediately prioritise the implementation of long overdue safety measures on Crumlin Road and Dolphin’s Barn to make our neighbourhood safer for all. Please help us to make our community a safer place and prevent further deaths on this stretch of road.”

Aodhan King, a member of the local D12BikeBus group, formed in 2019 by parents to shield children from traffic as they cycle to school, said the lack of progress in making the route safe had been very disheartening.

“We have been at meetings with the council, spoken to the engineers, but we haven’t got the result we have hoped for, if anything there has been a decline in road safety.”

The lower numbers of people driving into the city on Mondays and Fridays since the end of the pandemic, has resulted in cars travelling faster on the road on those days, he said.

“Driver behaviour has got worse, speed is not being controlled, there is no enforcement, but really enforcement isn’t the answer, engineering is the answer.”

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