First cyclist safety TV advert launched

Published Friday, 18 April 2014
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The first ever television campaign targeting cyclist's safety launched on Friday evening.

First cyclist safety TV advert launched
The road safety advert launches on Friday evening. (© DOE)

The Department of the Environment campaign, called "Don't Forget", debuted on television after UTV Live.

In the 10 year period between 2002 and 2012, the number of cyclists seriously injured on roads in Northern Ireland almost doubled, while the overall number of serious road traffic casualties declined by fifty per cent over the same period.

Between 2008 and 2012, six cyclists died on the region's roads, while in 2013 four died and 42 were seriously injured.

So far this year there have been 18 road deaths, compared to 16 for the same period last year and eight in 2012.

The campaign will run until after the Giro d'Italia 2014 cycle race in May and will be supported by online and outdoor activity.

Environment Minister Mark Durkan said: "The aim of the new campaign is to reduce road deaths and serious injuries involving cyclists by positively influencing the relationship between cyclists and drivers, supported by the message 'Respect Everyone's Journey.'"

"For many reasons, we have seen an increase in cycling here over the last number of years and the concept of 'Sharing the Road' has therefore never been more important. If we are to drive down road casualties down further, we must all take personal responsibility for our behaviour on the road, whatever type of road user we are."

"Cycling is much riskier than either walking or travelling by car. Based on miles travelled, cyclists are 23 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured than car users," the SDLP minister said.

"This campaign will encourage cyclists and drivers to engage with each other emotionally and help them understand each other's perspective, so that they respect each other's journey."

Transport Minister Danny Kennedy said: "It is clear that cycling is growing in popularity in Northern Ireland and my aim is to create a safe and accessible cycling infrastructure for everyone in Northern Ireland.

"This advertisement helps to further increase awareness amongst all road users to travel safely and respect one another," the UUP minister added.

Head of Roads Policing, Superintendent Gerry Murray issued an appeal to all road users to "exercise some common sense, goodwill and respect everyone's journey."

He added: "Unfortunately, many of my colleagues have experience of attending incidents involving cyclists. No matter who is at fault in a collision between a bicycle and a vehicle, it's always the cyclist who bears the brunt of any impact."

© UTV News
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31 Comments
Dave in Lisburn wrote (214 days ago):
The majority if bikers are fine its the idiots who come up the inside of cars, and ride 2 or 3 abreast to chat with there chums. As for the silly bike spots at the front of the traffic lights well whats that all about!! Thats only incouraging these bikers to slip up the inside or outside of you and go to the front!! Mad if you open a car door to let a passenger out we have to look out for these idiots
Ignorance is not an excuse in Belfast wrote (215 days ago):
3 or 4 abreast? So...same width as a car? The legal distance you are required to leave when overtaking, aye?
Rick in Belfast wrote (215 days ago):
Ignorant comments here highlight the necessity of this campaign. Cyclists on the roads at rush hour are part of the solution to traffic congestion, not the problem... Let's set a few things straight. 1. There is no law requiring cyclists to wear helmets, high-viz clothing or any other kind of safety gear. Motorists are expected to drive with "due care and attention" for vulnerable road users and pedestrians. 2. Groups of cyclists are allowed to cycle 2 abreast. (Cars are always 2 abreast, even if there's only one person in them!) Typically they should single out to allow cars to pass on narrow roads. 3. Cyclists are not obliged by law to use cycle lanes and at times it is safer or more convenient not to. Many are poorly maintained, insufficiently wide, full of glass, debris and (most often) parked cars!. 4. Cyclists are allowed to take a lane (ride down the middle of the road). Usually they do this for their own safety, i.e. to discourage (impatient) vehicles behind from trying to pass when there is not room to do so, e.g. approaching a blind corner or summit, or where the road is too narrow. 5. No-one pays road tax! Roads are paid for out of general taxation, not from the proceeds of vehicle excise duty (which people call road tax). Vehicles are now taxed based on their CO2 emissions so even if bikes were taxed the rate would be £0. Finally, sure some cyclists jump red lights and so on but I'd say on balance many more car drivers do. Last I heard no motorist ever got killed or seriously injured by being hit by a bike though.
Lisa in Lisburn wrote (215 days ago):
The comments here are proof that nothing will change. There isn't even any point in trying to address any of the points made above - minds have been made up. I'll give it a go anyway. Firstly, cyclists don't need to be licensed to ride on the roads, just as pedestrians don't need a licence to walk on the road. Cars need to be licensed because driving is a privilege, not a right. Why do cyclists ride alongside one another? Take a look the next time you're driving - are they REALLY 3 or 4 abreast? I seriously doubt it. That doesn't happen very often because cyclists hate that sort of thing too. Cyclists ride two abreast (which is perfectly legal) because it is often the safest option. It forces cars to have to overtake rather than pass, where there is not enough room. Why do cyclists ride in the middle of the road? Sometimes it's to avoid nasty potholes - they may wreck a car's suspension but they could kill a cyclist. Sometimes they are adopting the safest position on the road. Yes, they are preventing you from overtaking them - not to annoy you but because it may not be safe for you to do so and they know that. They don't have modern car, floating on air, dulling the senses technology and BOSE sound systems. They feel every inch of the road and sense danger acutely. Red lights...next time you're driving to work, or wherever, count the number of cars who sneak through red lights. Then count the number of bikes who do the same. I do it when I'm driving. You might be surprised. Road tax - do your research - doesn't exist. VED is payable based on emissions. That means some cars are exempt. Should they be allowed on the road? What it all boils down to is that cyclists (of which I am one) are human beings. When you're driving home from work, are you going home to your family? A nice meal with the kids, where you discuss your day? Me too. When you jump into your car do you wonder if you'll make it home alive or arrive in a body bag? No, you don't. That thought doesn't even cross your mind as a driver, does it? My journey is every bit as important as yours. Ask yourself this question - when was the last time a cyclist killed a driver? On my journey home from work I am 23 times more likely to DIE than if I chose to take my car. What part of that is acceptable? Show a little respect people. Every road user is a person with a family and friends. Taking stupid risks to shave 3 seconds off your journey time could leave my children without their mother. What part of that is acceptable? ps. As for the red light jumping, footpath hogging, wrong side of the road "cycalists", they aren't cyclists, they are morons on bikes.
Jimmy in Belfast wrote (215 days ago):
Few stupid comments here: A license to cycle Caolan? I have one, but should moped users and learner drivers be forced to learn off the road somewhere until they have a licence? Various-skipping red lights is safer for the cyclist, we get away from the traffic and avoid collision. Notice how most cyclists slow down and look to check before going though the red light. And secondly. All the people who complain about red lights - how many of you have never broken the speed limit? Or went through an amber light? If we should be banned until all cyclists stop at reds, no cars should be allowed on the road until all motorists follow the rules. As stated - there is no such thing as road tax 2 abreast is recommended by government for safety reasons - the Highway Code states you should give a cyclist the same amount of room overtaking as a car. If you can't overtake by crossing into the next lane, you should NOT be overtaking at all. Matt in colraine. That goes for you. That is why we "take the lane" to stop numptys like you pushing us up against the kerb to try and overtake with cars in the next lane. Not safe. Dave - the roads were not build for just cars. We share them. I cycle and drive on them. If I only cycled on cycle paths I would not get very far. I wouldn't even be able to get to work. And half the cycle lanes don't go very far and are badly placed. Cyclists are for the large part fitter than non-cyclists saving the NHS money long term that we all pay income tax for, and greener. I have a car. I use a bike to stay fit and not pollute the environment. I should not feel like a 2nd class citizen on the road. Not to defend breaking the law, but if drivers were more courteous, we would havent to go through reds to save our necks. I was out all weekend and yesterday a car pulled in front of one of the lads and hit him. Thankfully his car was damaged for his stupidity, but I suppose he probably should have been on the pavement....
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