Holy Thursday Set To Be Peak Day For Easter Exodus, Say AA Roadwatch

AA Roadwatch are gearing up for a busier than usual Easter weekend with the majority of motorists set to take to the roads on Holy Thursday evening.

According to the traffic information provider, traffic levels in Ireland have been at their heaviest in recent years and are unlikely to relent over the Easter holidays.

Elaine O’Sullivan, Editor of AA Roadwatch, says: “Some people will travel on Good Friday which will help stagger the getaway traffic, but it’s still going to be very busy at peak times on the major routes on Thursday. We’d advise motorists, where possible, to travel when it’s quieter and to make sure to plan your journey well in advance.

“Delays are likely from lunchtime onwards on Thursday leaving the main towns and cities as a lot of workers will take a half day. Evening rush hour should also be busy but is likely to die down before late.”

Elaine says that motorists also have a role to play in road safety over the break: “With heavy traffic, you often see irresponsible driving as frustrated motorists try to rush through congestion. Unfortunately, this often leads to traffic collisions.”

“Howth in Dublin and Glendalough, especially along the Wicklow Gap Road (R756), are likely to be busier this Bank Holiday weekend as motorists and pedestrians flock to take in the scenic views,” advises Elaine. “We are advising motorists to factor this in when planning a journey.”

Both the AA Roadwatch and AA Rescue teams will be working over the Easter weekend, and it’s likely both teams will be kept busy. “Easter is always busy weekend for AA Rescue,” says Elaine. “Drivers are on longer journeys than usual and often with the cars full of kids and luggage. AA Patrols will be on duty up and down the country and we expect to see busier volumes on the motorways and cross country routes while the cities become a little quieter.”

There will also be a number of road closures and diversions in place to facilitate 1916 Easter Rising commemorations, with Dublin set to become a hive of activity over the weekend.

O’Connell St will be completely closed off to traffic from midnight on Friday, 25 March right up until 11pm on Monday, 28 March to facilitate the commemorations. On Saturday, Parnell Square North and Parnell Square East will be closed between6am and 4pm to clear the way for a Ceremony of Remembrance taking place in the Garden of Remembrance on Parnell Square. Easter Sunday will see a number of road closures in place in the city centre to facilitate the Easter SundayCommemoration parade and other events.

For a full list of the routes affected, please see the AA Roadwatch event guide.

AA Roadwatch are predicting heavy traffic on the following routes, 24 March 2016:

  • M50 southbound from J15 Kilternan down to the M11 and then as far as J5 Bray North


  • M7 Dublin/ Limerick Rd between J6 Castlewarden and J11 M9 (but especially between J7 Kill and J10 Naas South)


  • N4/M4 Dublin/Sligo Rd between the Chapelizod Bypass and J7 Maynooth – though the heaviest traffic tends to be between J4 Newcastle and J6 Celbridge. Delays are also expected further west on this route through Carrick on Shannon


  • N17 Galway/Sligo Rd northbound will see long delays into Claregalway and Tuam


  • In Galway, the N18 Galway/Limerick Rd at Clarinbridge


  • The N21 Limerick/Tralee Rd is expected to be a busy route, especially at Adare


  • N40 South Ring Rd in Cork City; particularly between J6 Kinsale Rd and the Dunkettle Interchange


  • The N25 Cork/Waterford Rd eastbound heading into Castlemartyr. There are also works taking place this week further east on this route, on the Youghal Bypass and east of Dungarvan at The Pike. On the same route, but near the Kilkenny/Wexford border there will be long delays heading into New Ross from the Waterford side

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