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As three people die on the A5, it is time to make this road safer

There will be a deep sense of shock and sadness at the deaths of three people on the A5 in Co Tyrone in recent days but these tragedies will also reinforce calls for this major route to be upgraded.

Pedestrian Sean Reid (69) died after being knocked down on Tuesday morning on the Great Northern Road in Omagh.

The previous day, a married couple in their seventies, believed to be visitors from England, were killed when their Volvo car was in collision with an articulated lorry on the Doogary Road.

That fatal crash came just hours after Joanne Tracey, a 36-year-old mother of three from Greencastle, Co Tyrone, died in an early morning collision in Drogheda as she travelled back from the All-Ireland GAA final at Croke Park.

The causes of all these fatal incidents will have to be fully investigated but the deaths on the A5 have led to further calls for improvement works on the road to be completed as a matter of urgency.

There is no doubt that sections of this busy road are regarded as being particularly dangerous.

While the onus is on drivers to ensure they drive as carefully as possible, there is also a responsibility on government to address high risk routes and deliver safer roads that help to reduce our unacceptably high death toll.

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