Sir, – Finn McRedmond warns us that soon certain motorised vehicles will clog Dublin’s streets and bike lanes (“Electric bikes might be fun and flashy but, let’s face it, they’re not really bikes”, Opinion & Analysis, September 21st). We are told that these vehicles, which will leave a negative imprint on the city, are too heavy, too noisy and will be left obstructing footpaths. Children cycling to school will have to share the road with the adults who drive these vehicles at speed!
What’s surprising is that this warning is about 35kg electric bikes rather than 1,800kg SUVs. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Rather than lament the poor experience she had in London, perhaps Finn McRedmond could take a look at Bray, Co Wicklow, where there is currently a very successful e-bike trial in place where bikes are properly parked and not abandoned.
The app used by the bikes in Bray ensures that the bikes are properly parked at the end of the journey or the user is fined; the speed of the bikes is also restricted in high traffic areas and you cannot park in certain areas.
It is a shame that the author writes off an entire programme without looking at the trials in Ireland and assumes that poor behaviour by Londoners will somehow be replicated by Dubliners. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – I read with bemusement Finn McRedmond’s views on e-bikes. Despite her strong feelings on what should be in a cycle lane, there is no indication that Finn McRedmond uses any form of bike herself. As a cyclist, I do find e-bikes and e-scooters annoying. This annoyance, I might add, is born of nothing more than purism and elitism at their riders “cheating”. Realistically, however, they are not the biggest inconvenience to users of cycle lanes.
In my own experience, the biggest threat to cyclists (of all types) are cars and buses crossing into cycle lanes. This is not to demonise motorists – the majority of motorists are careful and considerate – but the absence of protected cycle lanes increases the chance of motorists moving into cycle lanes and colliding with a cyclist. Where protected cycle lanes exist, they are very effective. The onus is on local authorities to provide more of them.
And as for people on e-bikes? Best of luck to them. Anything that gets people on a bike, of any sort, is a good thing. – Yours, etc,