Safer cycling for all

 

Sir, – As a geriatrician, I am seeing increasing numbers of older people coming in who cycle well in to their eighties and nineties. Those with limited mobility due to conditions like arthritis often find non-weight bearing movement on a bicycle easier than walking. Electric bikes have enabled these people to continue to enjoy the physical and mental health benefits associated with cycling, as well as the societal benefit of reduced air pollution, reduced healthcare requirements, etc. However, we need to make cycling accessible and safe for all. The roll-out of increased cycling infrastructure will encourage more people of all ages to get out on two wheels. Unfortunately, older people are often excluded from the “Bike to Work” scheme as they have retired from work. There is an imperative for the Government to expand this scheme to all citizens of this country who wish to cycle, regardless of income. Every kilometre cycled benefits society to the tune of €0.16, so what are we waiting for? – Yours, etc,

Dr COLM BYRNE,

Consultant Geriatrician,

Mater Hospital, Dublin 7.

Sir, – In light of the increased interest in cycling, the expansion of cycle lanes and nationwide greenways, and the very sad reality of cycling-related brain injuries (News, January 5th), is it not high time to make the wearing of helmets by cyclists compulsory? – Yours, etc,

Dr ANNE O’FLYNN,

Terenure ,

Dublin 6W.