Cork woman wants training for Gardaí to deal with suicidal drivers

Oisin, Elber and Con Twomey

A Cork woman who lost her husband, son and unborn baby after their car was hit by a suicidal driver in England is spearheading a campaign to change the way police forces treat people in similar situations.

In July 2012, the Twomey family were returning home to North Cork from a holiday in Devon when a suicidal driver deliberately crossed the carriageway of the road and collided with their car.

Sixteen-month-old Oisin and his unborn sister Elber Marie died that day, their father Con died in hospital in Cork some 10 months later.

Mum, Elber, did survive the crash and is now campaigning to highlight awareness of the risk from suicide.

She says she would like to see Gardaí implement changes like those which resulted from her children's inquests in Britain.

Elber has now dedicated her life to ensuring that gardaí are specially trained to deal with suicidal drivers and with people who are known or suspected to have suicidal ideation.

She is due to meet senior garda management soon to discuss her crusade.

She said: “This has been a very difficult two years for me and I would appeal to the media to please respect my privacy.

“I am grateful to all those including politicians, charities, the media and ordinary Irish and British people who have helped support my campaign for greater road safety and enhanced training resources for the Garda Síochána so no other family has to endure the terrible loss that I have suffered.

“I especially wish to thank my family and Con’s family for their incredible support.”

Two Oireachtas committees have backed her campaign for gardaí to get special training to deal with suicidal drivers.

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