3,200 Galway drivers aged over 80 – nine of them learners!

There were more than 3,200 licenced drivers over the age of 80 on Galway’s roads last year, new figures from the Central Statistics Office show – including nine on learner permits.

The CSO’s ‘Transport Omnibus 2016’ shows that for drivers with full licences in Galway, there were 1,978 drivers aged 17-20; 5,915 aged 21-24; 11,653 aged 25-29; 33,987 aged 30-39; 32,839 aged 40-49’ 25,818 aged 50-59; 19,873 aged 60-69; 10,961 aged 70-79 and 3,253 were over 80.

For those on learner permits, 99 were under 17; 3,048 aged 17-20; 2,430 aged 21-24; 1,896 aged 25-29; 2,784 aged 30-39; 1,196 aged 40-49; 471 aged 50-59; 209 aged 60-69; 62 aged 70-79 and nine aged over 80.

The average waiting time for a driving test in 2016 was 16 weeks in Loughrea, 15 weeks in Galway and twelve weeks in both Tuam and Clifden.

There were a total of 158,471 driving licences in Galway last year – 131,223 were ten-year licenses; 10,220 triennial licenses; 525 annual licences and 12,205 learner permits.

A breakdown of the figures shows that there were 76,658 male full licence holders and 69,609 female, while there were 6,201 male learners and 6,003 female.

The Transport Omnibus also shows there were a total of 145,837 vehicles on the road in Galway last year, based on licensing authority figures.

This included 109,271 private cars, 1,385 motorbikes, 20,756 goods vehicles, 5,669 tractors, 1,478 PSV vehicles (taxis, hackneys etc); 2,008 vehicles are classed as ‘exempt’ and another 5,270 classed as ‘others’.

In 2016, there were a total of 7,298 new vehicles licensed in Galway, up from 6,481 the previous year.

Figures for the National Car Test (NCT) shows that in Ballinasloe, 8,100 vehicles passed first time; 7,229 failed the initial test; 6,630 passed on a re-test and 558 failed on the retest.

In the Clifden test centre, 1,709 passed first time and 2,808 failed; 2,487 passed on a re-test and 273 failed the re-test.

In Galway City, 27,343 passed first time; 32,539 failed the first time; 29,277 passed the re-test and 3,021 failed the re-test.

Meanwhile, more than 43,000 motorists in Galway had penalty points on their driving licences at the end of last year.

Speeding and mobile phone usage continue to be the biggest offences on Galway’s roads.

The ‘Transport Omnibus 2016’ report shows that in Galway, there were 43,055 drivers with points (points remain on the licence for a period of three years), which was up 1.2% from 42,462 at the end of 2015.

Meanwhile, in 2016, a total of 10,436 penalty point notices were issued in Galway – 5,975 to males and 3,836 to females, while no gender was recorded in 625 cases.

A breakdown of the Top 10 offences for men in Galway shows 3,699 for speeding; 1,044 for driving while holding a phone; 260 adults for failing to wear a seat belt in a car; 179 for driving without reasonable consideration; 136 for driving without an NCT; 90 for failing to obey traffic lights; 69 for crossing a continuous white line; 54 unaccompanied learners; 52 for no insurance and 25 for not displaying an L-plate.

Speeding was also the main offence for female drivers in Galway in 2016 (2,733), followed by mobile phones (577); driving without reasonable consideration (78); no seat belt (75); no NCT (56); failure to obey traffic lights (44); unaccompanied learner driver (44); failure to display L-plate (19); no insurance (15) and failure to comply with prohibitory traffic signs (6).