Fixed Penalties for Cyclists

The Independent reported with last week, about the proposal from the Transport Minister to introduce fixed penalties for cyclists.

The fixed penalties would be issued by the Garda to unruly cyclists who get caught breaking the law – things such as having no lights at night, or breaking red lights – and would be used as a way to enforce the rules of the road without involving the courts’ time.

Personally, I’m in favour of upholding the law, and would like to cyclists behave better on the roads – for the increase in their own safety if for nothing else. However, it seems a little unfair to target bikes on their own, when the streets of Dublin are also full of motorists flouting the law.

On any given day I see any number of motorists speeding, breaking red lights, illegally parking, driving dangerously, and talking/texting on their mobile phones. And they never get stopped by the Guards and prosecuted. I also see lots of cyclists (including, curiously, Garda cyclists) breaking the law too, and not getting caught.

There seems to be a general disregard of rules and regulations on the road, from all road users. So instead of singling out the bad behaviour of one group, we should address all bad behaviour on our roads.

Richard Bloomfield

Richard is the founder of Dublin Bike Blog. He commutes to work every day by bike, come rain or shine, on his Dutch city bike. You can read more from Richard on his blog richardbloomfield.ie.

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