Cyclist.ie, the Irish Cycling Advocacy Network, is troubled and saddened by the recent death of a cyclist in Co Meath last weekend, bringing to twelve the number of people killed while cycling in Ireland, so far in 2017. This is more cyclists than were killed in all of 2016. All of these deaths have involved motor vehicles. We would like to convey our deepest sympathies to the family of the latest victim and indeed to the families of all those killed on our roads.
Colm Ryder, Cyclist.ie Chairman said “These deaths have not been caused by accident; they have been caused by avoidable collisions. Collisions arise because of error, incapacity, inattention or distraction on the part of drivers or cyclists, with inadequate design or maintenance of roads or vehicles as contributory factors. Other factors that contribute are lack of awareness of, and/or respect for people who cycle, and dangerous driving such as speeding and dangerous overtaking.”
We are calling on the following immediate actions to reduce or eliminate the risk to cyclists on our roads:
- We call on the Minister for Transport, Shane Ross, to increase funding for cycling, invest in safe, well designed infrastructure for cycling and to introduce necessary changes in the law such as the proposed Minimum Passing Distance Law (Note: Less than 2% of transport funding is allocated to cycling. This low figure compares with a UN recommendation to allocate 20% of Transport funding to cycling.)
- We call on the Minister for Justice, Charles Flanagan, and the Garda to improve and increase enforcement of road traffic laws, especially in relation to cyclists’ safety and well-being.
- We call on the RSA to increase its efforts to improve road safety for vulnerable road users, and in particular to bring about improvements in the education of drivers to be more aware of, and to give adequate space and respect to cyclists and pedestrians on our roads.
- We call on all road users
– to drive with due care and attention,
– to refrain from speeding and using mobile phones and other distractions,
– to refrain from drinking and impaired-driving,
– to keep their vehicles roadworthy, and above all
– to be aware of, and respect each other on the road.
As we have stated so many times cyclists do not throw themselves at motor vehicles with a death-wish. There is something wrong with traffic on our roads.