Mr. Shane Ross TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Road Safety Authority (RSA), An Garda Síochána and Cyclist.ie, the Irish Cycling Advocacy Network, today (June 20) called on drivers to slow down and keep a safe distance when overtaking cyclists on both urban and rural roads.
Not only during the upcoming National Bike Week which runs from June 22-30, but every day of the year. Cyclists are also being reminded to follow the rules of the road.
All road users need to be aware there will be an increase in the number of cyclists on the road over this period, with drivers in particular being asked to treat them with respect and to share the road safely.
The organisations have three important pieces of advice for drivers:
- Give cyclists the space to ride safe when overtaking them. (One metre in speed zones up to 50 km/h and 1.5 metres in zones over 50km/h). Cyclists can be thrown off course by sudden gusts of wind or when having to avoid uneven road surfaces.
- Check mirrors regularly. Remember a cyclist could be in your blind spot, look carefully before making your manoeuvre or getting out of a parked vehicle.
- If you or passengers are getting out of the vehicle make sure you check for passing cyclists before opening the door.
Mr. Ross said: “National Bike Week is a great way to get out and about and I would encourage everyone to use the road safely, look out for each other and enjoy the various activities taking place all around the country. Cycling is a popular means of transport in Ireland. Safe overtaking by motorists will protect cyclists and ensure that our roads are shared safely by all and reduce the number of cycling deaths on our roads. We all have a responsibility, whether as motorists, cyclists, or pedestrians to share the road in a safe and responsible manner.”