The public are being warned to never drive after drinking or taking drugs, stop speeding, pay greater attention to the road and their surroundings and to leave their mobile phone alone when driving, cycling or even crossing the road.
The warning comes as police launch a series of summer road safety operations.
Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd said, “With many people enjoying some time off over the coming months, we are appealing to all road users to exercise caution, as our statistics illustrate that, like any other holiday period, there is an increased risk of collisions.
“To date this year, 35 people have been killed on our roads, two more when compared to the same time last year. These are not simply frightening statistics, behind each fatality are families, friends and communities across Northern Ireland who are mourning the loss of a loved one. Considering that many, if not the majority of these deaths caused by collisions could have been avoided; it’s an appalling waste of life.
“Inattention, speeding, or more accurately, excessive speed for the conditions and drink or drug driving, are consistently the principal causes of the most serious road traffic collisions in which people are killed or seriously injured.
“Over the coming months, we will have police resources on the roads across Northern Ireland and will be liaising closely with our An Garda Síochána Traffic Corps colleagues in the border counties, specifically looking for road users taking unnecessary and potentially life-changing risks.”
With many school children and young people preparing to enjoy the holidays, he said, road users should also keep an eye out for increased numbers of children using or crossing roads, particularly close to parks and leisure amenities, in addition to junctions and bus stops.
“All we ask is that drivers slow down, do not drive after drinking or taking drugs, wear a seatbelt, drive with greater care and attention and don’t use mobile phones while driving,” Assistant Chief Constable Todd concluded.