14,000 speed fines issued during works on M7 motorway
The number of speeding fines issued to motorists along the M7 roadworks has reached almost 14,000 - with at least another three months still to go on the project.
Digital display boards along the 14km stretch of the works zone are showing the number of prosecutions at 13,700 or an average of nearly 100 per day. Additional court sittings may be held to process the number of people hit with speed fines.
Since late November, motorists have been required to slow down from the maximum speed of 120km/ph to a reduced speed of 60km/ph.
It emerged in recent days that the works to add an extra lane between Kill and the M9 merge will now finish in July - three months later than the estimated deadline given in January.
At the current rate, the total number of speeding fines could breach 20,000 by then. Kildare County Council insisted that parts of the road would be widened on a phased basis before July. The third lane between Johnstown (Junction 8) and Naas South (Junction 10) will open in the coming weeks.
In early January, the main contractor, Siac/Colas JV informed Kildare County Council, the Department of Transport and Transport Infrastructure Ireland, that the three lanes of the M7 motorway would be operational in both directions by the end of April 2019.
However many of the 70,000 to 80,000 commuters who travel the route every day had grown increasingly skeptical of this deadline in recent weeks. Kildare Co Council said night works are being carried out to speed up the construction process, however contractors are bound by working time directives and safety considerations.
Rolling lane changes are a regular occurrence for motorists to allow workers to continue working on the motorway.