Bring Back Operation Freeflow to tackle Traffic Chaos
Labour Transport spokesperson, Sen. Kevin Humphreys has said that the traffic chaos this morning shows the need for the reinstatement of Operation Freeflow in the run up to Christmas. Senator Humphreys has written to the Minister for Transport and Minister for Justice calling on them to re-introduce the successful scheme.
Senator Humphreys said:
“Across the greater Dublin area this morning commuters faced traffic chaos due to flash flooding and heavy rain. For a country like Ireland we should be well prepared for weather events like this.
“With increasing traffic volumes on our roads, and the busy Christmas period to come over the next month, the Government should now move to re-instate Operation Freeflow.
“Operation Freeflow was first introduced by then Minister for Environment Brendan Howlin in December 1996 and the key objective was to ensure that traffic laws were enforced such as keeping junctions, bus lanes and yellow boxes clear.
“In the past, probationary Gardaí from Templemore were drafted into Dublin to ensure that junctions and bus lanes in and around Dublin city centre were policed along with other focused measures.
“Also central to efforts to combat traffic jams was a ban on non-essential road maintenance and repair. In recent years we have all seen the last minute road works that are undertaken by Councils to ensure allocated monies are spent by the end of year.
“Efforts to increase the use of public transport into town are essential if we are to reduce the number of cars.
“In recent years the closure of Templemore and non-availability of trainee Gardaí meant there hasn’t been an Operation Freeflow as we knew it since 2011, but now that the college is up and running again the events of this morning show that it’s time to bring back this successful Operation for the seasonal rush.”