Last year, there were 162 deaths on Irish roads, the lowest number since records began. However AA said 2013 began badly with deaths up 18 per cent and five people were killed over the bank holiday weekend alone.Faughan said “prominent, visible policing is critical” and AA today called on the government to make sure that adequate resources are provided to gardaí and for road maintenance.Read: Operation Slow Down: 321 vehicles caught speeding in 24 hours>Read: 75 killed on Irish roads this year, don’t be number 76 this weekend> Roads are not like fine wine. hey do not improve with age. If you do not keep them properly the damage gets worse and the ultimate repair cost escalates. This is what is happening now, as every motorist who has hit a pothole in recent months could tell you. ALMOST THREE QUARTERS of Irish motorists believe that the garda presence on our roads has reduced since last year.A poll of over 20,300 motorists by AA reveled that just 8.5 per cent of people think the presence is the same or has increased while almost 72 per cent said it was less than last year.Based on these results, it’s not surprising that almost 40 per cent also think that the government is not treating road safety as a priority.Another area of concern for motorists is the condition of Irish roads with over 82 per cent saying that it had worsened since last year.Director of Consumer Affairs at AA, Conor Faughan, said that there was “not enough done to rectify” the damage done in the 2010 freeze.“This is why the AA gets complaints and attends car breakdowns caused by potholes and dangerous road surfaces on a daily basis,” he said.