Updated: 09/01/17 : 06:48:51
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Rural TDs oppose Ross proposal to reduce drivers' alcohol limit

Rural TDs have criticised Shane Ross's proposal to reduce the alcohol limit for drivers, saying that laws currently in place should be enforced. 

The Irish Independent report that the Transport Minister has put forward several reforms to improve road safety including reducing the blood alcohol limit from 50mg to 20mg for all drivers. 

This means a single alcoholic drink could push some drivers over the limit, a move that some TDs have described as "devastating" for rural communities.

After a 15pc increase in road deaths last year TDs have praised Ross for bringing the issue into public debate, but don't believe his proposed reforms will save peoples' lives.

Independent TD Seán Canney, was critical of how the reforms would be carried out.

He said: "We have to look at the existing laws and how we're enforcing them. We have to look at the new laws in terms of driving under the influence of drugs and the issue of phones and texting while driving; they're huge issues on the roads."

Michael Healy Rae TD said: "You could reduce the limit tomorrow to zero and who can say that would save one more life. I would honestly believe that it wouldn't."

Michael Fitzmaurice, TD for the Roscommon-South Leitrim area, believes there should be more of a focus on repairing roads that are in "a deplorable state" in order to combat road deaths.