Plea to ban sharing of road traffic accident images

by Rachel Cunningham
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Labour’s transport spokesperson, Duncan Smith, has introduced a piece of legislation that prohibits the recording or publication of images taken at the scene of a road traffic accident. 

The Protection of Accident Victims from Non-Consensual Recording of Images Bill 2022 was drafted in response to the recent distressing trend of images of road traffic accident victims being shared online. 

Calling for the ban last Thursday, July 14, Deputy Smith said: “The posting and sharing of images taken by those who come upon the scene of an accident has become all too common. 

Labour TD Duncan Smith

“The fact that family members and friends can be exposed to such harmful and grotesque images before they have even learned of the accident is unforgivable. It is deeply disrespectful and distressing intrusion into private grief that must be outlawed.” 

Highlighting that there are between 150 and 200 road fatalities and approximately 8,000 injuries road traffic collision-related injuries annually, Deputy Smith noted that there is “hardly a person in this country” who has not been either directly or indirectly affected by a serious car accident. 

“It is becoming increasingly common for An Garda Síochána to issue strong requests in the immediate aftermath of a serious accident for people not to share these types of images and it must stop”, he concluded.

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