Category Archives: Irish Posts

Legality of Bull Bars

From: Vehicle Standards Section, Road Safety Authority, via Email on 1 August 2017

Thank you for your query regarding frontal protection systems, more commonly known as bull bars, which has been passed to me for our direct response. The legal position on these is as follows;
EC Regulation 78/2009 lays down the requirements for the type-approval of motor vehicles relating to the protection of pedestrians and vulnerable road users. This Regulation contains specific requirements for frontal protection systems that can be approved for use on a vehicle and has replaced Directives 2005/66/EC and 2003/102/EC since 24th November 2009. EC Regulation 78/2009 has been transposed into Irish law in the Road Vehicles Entry into Service Regulations (S.I No. 157 of 2009) and the Mechanically Propelled Vehicle Entry into Service (S.I. No. 448 of 2007). he technical requirements of Regulation 78/2009 in relation to frontal protection systems do not differ from the requirements of Directive 2005/66/EC which was in place since 21st May 2007.

Currently frontal protection systems, either fitted by a vehicle manufacturer or supplied as separate technical units[1] and intended for fitting to new passenger cars (category M1 vehicles) and light goods vehicles (category N1 vehicles) must meet the requirements of EC Regulation 78/2009. Systems for fitment to these vehicles must satisfy a number of tests, including energy absorption, before they can be type-approved for use on new vehicles. Also, Type Approved frontal protection systems must not be distributed, offered for sale or sold unless accompanied by a list of vehicle types for which the frontal protection system is type approved, as well as clear assembly instructions. The proof that a frontal protection system meets with the requirements of Directive 2005/66/EC or Regulation 78/2009 is the presence of an e-mark.

Once vehicles are in service they must adhere to the requirements set out in the Road Traffic (Construction, Equipment & Use of Vehicles) Regulations (S.I. No. 190 of 1963). Article 32 states that vehicles “shall not have any inessential object in a position where it is likely to strike any person involved in a collision with the vehicle, unless injury is not likely to be caused by reason of the projection of the object”. Furthermore Article 96 states that “every vehicle while used in a public place shall be such, and so maintained and used, that no danger is likely to be caused to any person”. Owners or drivers of vehicles breaching these regulations may be found guilty of an offence under Section 11 of the Road Traffic Act 1961 as amended.

It is important to note that all frontal protection systems fitted or made available for fitting to new vehicles at registration or before entry in to service since 21 May 2007 must bear an e-mark. If it does not, then the vehicle should not be registered or allowed entry into service. It should also be noted that there are currently systems fitted and in widespread use that bear manufacturers’ logos but do not conform to the relevant type approval requirements. Such systems, which are most often fitted to a vehicle post registration, are not made by the vehicle manufacturer and would not be shown to have the necessary levels of pedestrian and vulnerable road user’s protection as required by EC Regulation 78/2009. If such devices were fitted to vehicles in use on a public road, such use may be in contravention of Articles 32 and 96 of S.I. No. 190 of 1963 as highlighted above and the driver/owner of that vehicle may be guilty of an offence.

Enforcement of the Road Traffic Regulations is a matter for An Garda Síochána and interpretation is a matter for the courts.

[1] ‘separate technical unit’ means a device subject to the requirements of a regulatory act and intended to be part of a vehicle, which may be type- approved separately, but only in relation to one or more specified types of vehicle where the regulatory act makes express provisions for so doing;

Trusting this clarifies the situation for you.

Kind regards Brian Forde Vehicle Standards

Pre-Budget 2018 submission from Cyclist.ie

Cyclist.ie (www.cyclist.ie), the network of cycling advocacy groups, greenway development groups, and bicycle festivals on this Island, makes this Pre-Budget Submission 2018 in the interests of the Budget supporting and encouraging more active travel on a daily basis by Irish citizens, in line with the aims of the government’s ‘National Cycle Policy Framework’ (2009), ‘Smarter Travel’ (2009) and in the process improving general population health via
the ‘Healthy Ireland’ strategy (2016). Read full submission

Submission to the Department of Transport

Cyclist.ie sent in a detailed submission to the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport today in response to its consultation on Greenways. 
 
We want to see an extensive network of high quality Greenways built throughout Ireland, which themselves form one plank of a wider strategy of creating a safe environment for people of all ages and abilities to cycle in. This requires serious funding and leadership from Minister Ross’ Department. We need to make cycling safe and normal again! 
 
We also stressed in our submission the importance of providing top quality Greenways and cycleways from within our cities leading out onto quieter rural roads. In the capital, this means building a safe Liffey Cycle Route, complete Greenaways alongside the Royal and Grand Canals, alongside the Dodder and Santry Rivers, and of course an East Coast Trail / Sutton to Sandycove route. We urgently also need equivalent green networks in Waterford, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Sligo. 
 
You can read our submission here
 
A sincere thanks to Cyclist.ie’s super volunteers for providing input into the submission – and indeed for sending in their own submissions. 

Cycling without Age

‘Cycling Without Age’ is a member group of Cyclist.ie. We received this update from Clara Clarke.

We thought you might like a brief update on our progress since we had the national launch on 13 June in Dun Laoghaire.  Our sincere thanks to CWA founder Ole Kassow who came from Copenhagen, and to the DLR Cathaoirleach Cormac Devlin for ‘launching’ us. Thanks also to the Irish Ambassador to Denmark, Cliona Manahan, and to the Cultural Officer of the Danish Embassy in Dublin, Eva Rauser. Our passengers on the day were Ernie and Phyllis from Ashbury Nursing Home, Deansgrange, who quickly became celebrities!

People travelled from all over Ireland to see the bike and be part of this amazing new initiative. We have had massive media publicity both on the day and since, with radio interviews continuing. We now have three confirmed companies willing to sponsor bikes and donate them to nursing homes of their choice, with several other companies talking to us. The first sponsored bike arrived in Dublin last week. Companies will send their staff to be pilots as part of their CSR (corporate social responsibility) programmes. And what a fun way to be doing your CSR! Taking residents out for spins, chatting and sharing stories and all feeling the wind in their hair! And, if you think that cycling might be too much for older people, take a look at the ‘Convoy’ photo attached. On our trip to Denmark last week to visit Cycling Without Age there, we took a convoy of 15 rickshaw bikes with quite frail nursing home residents out for an all-day 40 km cycle – and they loved it! So, age is no limit and we just want to give as many people as possible the fun and freedom experience of Cycling Without Age.

Cycling Budget Must Be Increased

From Cycling Ireland

The cycling community has lost another member to the roads. This year has seen eleven people die while cycling their bike on the road. The circumstances vary, city cycling, rural cycling, commuting, recreational cycling, day and night. This is no longer a debate about who deserves the road more, the finger pointing has to stop and a commitment from the government to an increased investment in cycling must be agreed before this number becomes twelve.

Currently less than 1% of the transport budget is spent on smarter travel – or cycling and walking. We need this to increase in order to make the roads safer and more user friendly for everybody. The Infrastructure and Capital Investment Programme for 2016-2021 was published last September, proposing that out of a €10 billion transport budget, €100 million would be spent on Smarter Travel.

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