Cyclists taking a chance with visibility?
2019-05-01 16:21:58 -

How shocking it is that no laws exist to force cyclists to either wear a high visibility vest or a helmet? Even though riders are encouraged to do so, it is not mandatory.


The only legal requirements for cyclists are a bell and, for riding in darkness, a light and reflector. This is hardly adequate for the huge volumes of traffic we have which see cyclists and their bike disappear with the traffic around them if they are not clearly visible.


Surprising, too, is that a helmet is not mandatory, though strongly encouraged. Cyclists go virtually unnoticed in urban and suburban areas without hi-vis. It is one thing not to have a hi-vis vest in the day time, but at night it is tantamount to attempted suicide.


Our Minister for Transport Shane Ross and the Road Safety Authority (RSA) seem to have overlooked a crucial area in making laws which would, if enacted with stiff fines, force cyclists to wear a hi-vis and a helmet at all times.


Responsible cyclists wear them mainly because of a public safety campaign and their own common sense — not because it is law, because there is no law to force cyclists to wear a hi-vis or helmet.


Cyclists are very prone to fatal accidents on our roads and up to 10 are killed every year, with more seriously hurt. The elephant in the room once again cannot be ignored by the Government, or cyclists who are none too concerned either about their visibility and want to chance it.


Maurice Fitzgerald,
Shanbally, Co Cork

TAGS : cyclists law safety helmets
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