CHANGES to laws relating to drunk drivers involved in fatal accidents will save lives, says one Birr native, who tragically lost her son after he was killed by a drunk driver three years ago.
Christina Donnelly is campaigning hard for public support in a bid to change the law, dubbed ‘Brendan’s Law’ and wants to see drivers involved in fatal accidents, who fail breath tests suspended from driving once charged until their case comes before the courts.
The Birr native’s son, Brendan was killed aged 24 along with his 26 year old friend Lee Salkeld on October 26 2009 as they travelled to Cork airport for a holiday and would have been 27 on May 20 next.
As part of the cause, ‘Brendan’s Law’ also seeks mandatory sentences of a minimum of six years for drunk drivers convicted in relation to fatal accidents along with mandatory disqualifications from driving from between 20 and 25 years.
Support has also been garnered from Senator Mark Daly along with Waterford councillor Gary Wyse and a group of DIT postgraduate students under the guidance of Dr Nick Flynn and it is understood that the campaign team are working on the preparation of a draft bill in respect of the proposed changes.
Christina explained that the campaign has gained “huge momentum” since it took off on Facebook on October 2011. “It has gathered huge momentum and there has been great support,” the campaigner said.
It is now hoped that the campaign will secure the support of the Road Safety Authority [RSA] in the coming weeks. The campaign’s facebook page currently stands at almost 2,500 likes and it to this that Christina is pleading with people to show their support for the cause.
Christina explained that this campaign and the proposed changes to the laws are for the families now and in the future.
“One day, it will all come to fruition and reach a conclusion,” she said, believing that the changes could go some way in easing the pain of families as well as saving lives.
“And, it is all about saving lives. I would ask the public to support it and visit the facebook site. Every click is important.” There is also a petition page at www.ipetition.com that people can lend their support to the campaign.
Meanwhile on the campaign front, Dr Flynn, explained that the team need legal advise and asked if there are people with legal expertise who wish to support this campaign to get in contact with them.
“This will make a difference,” he added.