Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport, Timmy Dooley TD, says more resources and training are needed to provide a safer urban cycling experience throughout the country.
As events across the country mark National Bike Week, Deputy Dooley said the Government needs to do more to encourage greater numbers of people to take up cycling.
Fianna Fáil recently launched a policy document entitled ‘Improving the Urban Cycling Experience’ which contained a number of suggestions on improving conditions for cyclists.
“Policymakers need to take a much more active interest in improving the urban cycling experience in cities and urban areas throughout the country,” said Deputy Dooley.
“Fianna Fáil launched Ireland’s first ‘National Cycle Policy Framework’ in 2009 which was part of the then Government’s 20 year ‘Smarter Travel’ transport policy. Many elements of this progressive policy have yet to be implemented and I am calling on the Minister for Transport to put in place a framework to build on that work and take forward the additional proposals contained in this new Fianna Fáil policy document.
“In many cases, the proposals involve simple changes to legislation and don’t require significant investment.
For example, we are proposing a ban on parking in cycle lanes and greater integration of cycling with public transport.
“There also needs to be more of an emphasis on bike security including establishing a database of bikes and bike owners; there should also be mandatory training and education of primary school children in cycle safety.
“In a society where obesity is becoming an ever increasing problem, progressive policies like this should also be part of a co-ordinated campaign to improve mobility and quality of life.
“The Government continually says that it is interested in constructive suggestions from the opposition. Fianna Fáil’s ‘Improving the Urban Cycling Experience’ document contains a number of cost effective and sensible suggestions and I would hope some, if not all, of these are taken on board.”