Cyclists and the law


Sir, - It is rare for me to agree with Mary Holland on anything, but as a Dublin Bus driver I have to give her three cheers for her excellent piece (Opinion, April 26th) on the attitude of cyclists in this city. No cheers, however, for John Gorman and his somewhat laboured "peace process" analogy; in fact, if I had my way the politics I would favour regarding cyclists would be those of apartheid.

As any of my colleagues will attest, cyclists are the scourge of the city. The presence of a single bicycle in a bus lane renders it completely useless, and what is all the more frustrating to bus drivers is that while most bus lanes have cycle tracks running beside them, cyclists nakedly (and illegally) refuse to use them. The situation was bad enough when I was driving an ordinary vehicle, but these days I drive a 60-foot articulated "bendy bus". Twice in the past fortnight passengers leaving the bus have been struck by cyclists forcing their way up the inside at stops. Bringing the vehicle around a corner is a nightmare because, regardless of how close the trailer comes to the kerb, you are guaranteed to find some cretin trying to pass between the bus and the path.

The complete disregard shown by cyclists for the rules of the road is simply scandalous. Traffic lights are a joke, oneway systems an imposition. Other drivers are expected to adjust themselves and their vehicles around the cyclist and any complaint will either be ignored or (in the case of couriers) be met with a round of abuse. Unfortunately, this is not the attitude of a tiny minority; the minority are the ones who act responsibly. For the rest it's a case of: "Get out of my way, I'm a cyclist." - Yours, etc.,

David Smith, Harmonsown Road, Artane, Dublin 5.