The family of a Longford teenager killed in a road crash hope the death of their son can help prevent a further loss of life through a seatbelt awareness campaign.
A jury at the inquest into the death of Longford teen Michael Warren made the recommendation after hearing evidence of the car crash that killed him at Dublin’s corner’s court today.
A coroner is to call on the Road Safety Authority to launch a new campaign highlighting the importance of seat belts following the death of a Longford teenager in a road crash over two years ago.
Michael Warren Junior was thrown from the back seat of a car that crashed at Ballymackeegan, outside Longford around 3.50am on August 9 2015.
Michael was one of a number of passengers in the car driven by a learner driver under the influence of alcohol and was not wearing his seat belt at the time.
His devastated father told how his dying son grabbed his hand in hospital less than two hours after the crash.
Michael Warren Snr said, “He grabbed my left hand and squeezed it tightly and pulled me with some force towards him,”.
Dublin Coroner’s Court heard that the family’s ‘fervent wish’ is that the tragedy of Michael’s death can prevent further loss of life.
Solicitor Roger Murray, speaking on the family’s behalf said “The family want the message to go out loud and clear that seat belts save lives,”.
The inquest heard the VW Bora was speeding in excess of 100kmph when it crashed.
Michael was rushed to the Midlands Regional Hospital in Mullingar where a scan revealed a head injury and he was transferred to Beaumont Hospital.
However, he did not recover from an operation to remove a clot from his brain and died on August 10.
The cause of death was severe head injuries consistent with a motor vehicle collision.
Michael Jnr, from Castle Park, Newtownforbes, Co Longford was a promising GAA player and member of the Longford minor panel. He had just completed his Leaving Certificate and his ambition was to study electrical engineering at college.
Driver Conor Hayes, who is currently serving a three year sentence for dangerous driving causing death, was speeding ‘at a minimum of 110kmph’ when he lost control of the car, Garda Brendan Lee said.
He was on his second learner driver permit and was five times the legal alcohol limit for provisional drivers when the crash occurred.
The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the findings of the criminal court.