The Seven Cycling Sins



Transport Minister Paschal Donohue

 This morning.

Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe will unveil the seven cycling offences that will be subject to fixed charge notices.

Offences now the subject of €40 fines are:

1. Cyclist driving a pedal cycle without reasonable consideration.
2. No front lamp or rear lamp lit during lighting-up hours on a pedal cycle.
3. Cyclist proceeding into a pedestrianised street or area.
4. Cyclist proceeding past traffic lights when the red lamp is illuminated.
5. Cyclist proceeding past cycle traffic lights when red lamp is lit.
6. Cyclist failing to stop for a School Warden sign.
7. Cyclist proceeding beyond a stop line, barrier or half barrier at a railway level crossing, swing bridge or lifting bridge, when the red lamps are flashing.


Cyclists face on-the-spot fines for seven road traffic offences (Irish Times)

(Laura Hutton/Photocall ireland)

157 thoughts on “The Seven Cycling Sins

  1. newsjustin

    No mention of “driving the wrong way up a one way street.” Happens all too frequently.

      1. newsjustin

        It’s mostly not though. And not in the cases that I see. Just cyclists driving against traffic in the middle of one-way lanes.

  2. Paddy Murray

    Oh I see. Requiring cyclists to obey the law and the Rules of the road, is now a hate charter? Would you ever grow up, calm down and go suck a sweet or something.

    1. classter

      Clearly cyclists are slower, softer & less able to cause harm than cars are.

      We make allowances for pedestrians because, well um, they are pedestrians. Well, cyclists sit somewhere between pedestrians and cars, so trying to treat them as if they were behind the wheel of a large metal mechanically-propelled frame is stupid & counter-productive.

  3. Avon Barksdale

    Seems fair enough. The behavior of some fellow cyclists is reprehensible, and it’s definitely been getting worse. Saw a beardo on a fixie having a smoke AND eating a feckin croissant going up cork street a month or two ago for example. I don’t see that listed here though. I think also if you’re in a car and you see some shitehawk sending a text while cycling that you should be allowed run them over

      1. Avon Barksdale

        Too late, the suggestions I post usually become law within an hour after I’ve posted them

  4. Mysterymeat

    As a regular cyclist, I think these are great ideas, even though they’re all currently illegal. As with everything else though, they need to be enforced, not just added to the statute books to be ignored.

  5. Avon Barksdale

    Seems fair enough. The behavior of some fellow cyclists is reprehensible, and it’s definitely been getting worse. Saw a beardo on a fixie having a smoke AND eating a feckin croissant going up cork street a month or two ago for example. I don’t see that listed here though. I think also if you’re in a car and you see some s*tehawk sending a text while cycling that you should be allowed run them over

    1. Stewart Curry

      Smoking and eating at the same time is gross, but doing that while on a bike takes skill.

    2. newsjustin

      Maybe the first point (…without reasonable consideration) would cover that incidence of pastry cancer? It seems like a catch-all.

  6. RandomNoise

    Been cycling for years and seen plenty of dick head cyclists, often being dick heads in front of the gardai. Never seen anyone stopped or fined or warned. Although that was also the case in London. How are the cops meant to stop/caution people?

    Stop! Or I’ll say stop again!

    1. Sheila

      They do or at least my brother was stopped by a guard when he broke a red light on his bike. The judge thanked him for turning up to court! This was in the 1990s.

    2. Biggs

      In Germany, the police every now and then hide out of sight behind some traffic lights watching, and when a cyclist break one they step forward to show themselves with a STOP sign. Works every time. I got done twice, once for e130 (!) and the other for e80. Sneaky but effective.

      1. wearnicehats

        “Saw” implies randomnoise doesn’t cycle any more. “Have seen” would be better

        yours pedantically

  7. Sheila

    No 5, broken all the time on the canal cycle path along the Grand Canal in Dublin. I walk out in front of the offending cyclists while giving them the stink eye. This usually cheers me up on my walking commute to work in the morning.

    Please note I am well aware there are idiot pedestrians and motorists, but I’m just sticking to the topic here…

    1. Medium Sized C

      It really is.
      And it has gotten much worse lately.

      As soon as the pedestrian crossing light goes green there are bicycles everywhere.
      It’s crazy.

  8. Stewart Curry

    What about all those cyclists who are so amazing at cycling that these rules don’t apply to them?

    1. scottser

      exactly. you should be exempt from the above charges if you are pulling a wheelie at the time.

      1. pedeyw

        The tweens throughout inner city dublin that cycle in gangs, pulling wheelies on footpaths.

        1. Mr. T.

          They pull wheelies through traffic too. Kind of amazing to watch a 100 metre wheelie down the middle of the road.

          1. pedeyw

            I’ll admit they’re are impressive feats of wheeliedom. But I am walking/driving here.

  9. Spaghetti Hoop

    Hopefully an effective deterrent. Turning right yesterday on a green and narrowly missed two of the lycra-clad, saddled light-jumpers.Suicidal is what it is, let alone causing drivers stress and swerves.

    1. pedeyw

      There needs to be more of those boxes just for cyclists at lights, though. It’s currently near impossible to turn right if you’re forced to stay in the cycle lane.

  10. Spare

    Gardai don’t cycle in the winter (you know, the dangerous time of the year) so these are April to October rules, which still sucks cause that is when it’s best crack to cycle.

    I’d be grand with this if it wasn’t for the patronizing lecture, gimme the fine, that’ll do, get back to.

    Garda pulled me before for breaking every traffic light on O’Connell St, I was wearing my helmet, he delivered the killer lines with a dead pan seriousness, this guy was a pro: “I see you’re protecting your head, why aren’t you using what you are protecting though?”

    Take him away Toys.

    1. Clampers Outside!

      The lights at Thomas St leading onto James St, where Robert Emmet was hung, and where there’s a long safe path that most / many continue alongside of for about twenty feet after the white line / lights before stopping, if necessary… is where I got caught…

      Garda on bike: “You know you’re supposed to stop at the line and red lights behind you”

      “Force of habit” was my answer before I realised what I was saying… he was none too impressed… :)

      1. Dhaughton99

        No fear of moving the double parked taxi’s from around there. Or tackling the pi$$heads walking through the lanes of traffic to get to lidl.

        1. Dhaughton99

          OR the students from NCAD lining the road with coffee in hand, coming from centra. OR the auldwans with vans parked along that road, selling jacks paper and out of date twix’s.

    2. MMN

      It’s ‘bake him away toys’. I am probably the single worst cyclist in town for breaking the rules. Eat my shorts.

  11. Clampers Outside!

    Can we enforce the same cash penalties on cars at yellow box junctions?

    I’ll do the collecting on the box by the Brazen Head…. I’ll be a millionaire in under a year!

    1. Spaghetti Hoop

      Though the current penalty for yellow box-hoggin’ in town is usually a tram through your a$$.

  12. A

    Won’t make any difference – isn’t there on the spot fines for cars going through red lights already? They’re not enforced either.

  13. Bertie Blenkinsop

    They bring these out the day after I buy a bike and you wonder why I’m paranoid?!

  14. Drogg

    I don’t mind cyclists using the footpath to get around dangerous junctions, but I do have a problem with cyclists using the footpath cycling right towards you then getting agro with you for not moving out of the way, yes I am talking to you d*****ed on leeson street the other morning.

    1. pedeyw

      Yep. I’m a cyclist and refuse to move out of the way of cyclists on footpaths. Grow a pair and use the road.

    2. Jones

      Just simply shoulder them off their bikes, as which I demonstrated to the cyclist on the path just after the dart bridge on Clanwilliam tce/Grand Canal Quay last night. He made an awful racket crashing into the builder’s fence

      1. Anne

        It’s a fupping gungle up there.. Move out.. join the culchies. You’ll end up politer.

  15. Cyclops

    The Dutch Ambassador, leaving Ireland a few years back was asked what the big difference between the Netherlands and Ireland was – “That’s easy” he said, “The contempt you show to cyclists”.

    I think we should be doing everything possible to make cycling an attractive mode of transport and an enjoyable pastime.

    There are many cyclists who do really dangerous bad moves on the streets of Dublin. Then there are many who break many of the laws listed above with no consequence to anybody else.

    Victim-less crime comes to mind. Traffic lights and whatnot were only brought in for cars. When it was just pedestrians, horses and bikes we didn’t need them – for a reason.

    If I cycle on a path, I’ll go slowly. If I’m breaking a red light I’ll only do it if it’s safe to do so. If I don’t have lights on my bike I’ll take it easy, be much more alert for cars…. these are common sense things, and I believe I have the sense of self and society to make decent decisions that only impact on my safety.

    I expect this will be just like the time they brought in the jay walking fine that lasted about two weeks.


    1. Odis

      With criminals like you on the road, its easy to see why most right thinking people might “show contempt for cyclists”.
      Clearly the Dutch think its OK to palm us off with second rate diplomats.

    2. Paolo

      I don’t have insurance on my car because I’m really careful. I’ve bothered with the NCT coz I’m handy and keep my motor in good order. I enjoy doing 160kph but only when I deem it safe to do so.

    3. pedeyw

      Hardly victimless if you get hit by a car because you’re cycling with no lights, unless you think all drivers are guilt free sociopaths (which I have been tempted to think in the past but understand confirmation bias)

  16. thefatlad

    I’m all for this. I’m a cyclist and the ones that p*ss me off the most on the roads are other cyclists. Not all of them but there’s definitely a lot that barge around the place like they own the the roads.

    Next up is fining the saps that drive through red lights. It’s rampant throughout the city.

    1. scundered

      Dublin bike scheme riders by far seem to be the greatest offenders, and of course the couriers.

      1. thefatlad

        I actually think it’s the bikes themselves that cause some of the issues here. They’re the most unbalanced things ever so riders wobble down the road…that and maybe a bit of inexperience.

        Yeah and couriers can be mental too. The one I say loose the rag and lob his bike at the windscreen of a van one day was definitely having a “bad day”.

        1. Medium Sized C

          As someone who uses them on occasion, I have no idea what you are talking about.

      2. Medium Sized C

        I’m not sure the DB riders are much worse than the general cyclist population at all.

  17. Lilly

    There are aggressive cyclists who disregard the law putting others at risk because they’re d**kheads and then there are gentle cyclists who do it to protect themselves, taking care not to injure anyone (cycling slowly on footpaths at junctions etc). World of difference. Pity our cycle lanes are so middling.

  18. David

    Don’t know about Dublin but here in de wescht there’s a heck of a lot of drivers pulling onto cycle lanes to take all those thousands of ever-so-important calls. A tap on the window as I pass makes ‘em jump out of their skins.

    No that we have many cycles lanes but.

    1. scottser

      but there’s a fair proportion of cycle lanes that shouldn’t be cycle lanes – on footpaths that leave 18 inches to walk on, that are interrupted by parking spaces and bus stops, that veer round corners at junctions, etc. then there’s the cycle lanes that are so badly damaged you might as well walk.

      1. dereviled

        … Actually a lot of the cycle lanes were designed by people who hate cyclists.
        That said, cyclists who don’t respect the rules and other road users and pedestrians are a pain for everyone.
        I for one welcome this Bicycle Cop-on Charter

        1. scottser

          the thinking behind cycle lane provision was purely economic. we got EU funding per km of cycle lane we introduced, so it was always a question of quantity over quality.

  19. Starina

    Good luck imposing this at LaTouche Bridge. The government could make a few hundred a day in fines there.

    1. Sheila

      +100000 yoyos

      Slightly off topic, by I spotted a girl wearing high vis vest sitting at the junction of Grove Road, Rathmines and La Touche Bridge one morning this week, who looked like she was recording the number of road users going through the junction at the various traffic light stages i.e. green, amber and red light.

      I sure hope this data will be used wisely and quickly in terms of detering the eejits that break amber and red lights here (and all junctions).

      1. Spaghetti Hoop

        Agree. I could save the RSA some time if they provide me with a good dashcam.

  20. pissedasanewt

    And all this money collected will be ring fenced and used to improve cycle lanes and police the theft of bikes around the city?? No probably not.

      1. classter

        How often have you seen that enforced on drivers?

        When was the last time there was a massive campaign around car drivers breaking lights & knocking down cyclists? And yet fairly regularly, we get some nonsense like this.

        A typical, conservative politician playing to his base of middle-aged, car-bound couples living in suburbs and one-off houses in the countryside.

  21. wearnicehats

    I’m all for these new laws because, in general, cyclists are appallingly behaved.

    As a cyclist I have been knocked off my bike twice – both times by pedestrians so I would like to see some sort of jaywalking laws brought in too though.

  22. brownbull

    this is unnecessary populist nonsense – minor infractions from cyclists are not a problem worthy of this attention and present no significant safety risk – this is unnecessary costly bureaucracy and infringement of civil liberties to satisfy grumpy whingebags on pub stools and sofas – ringing George Hook and Joe Duffy moaning about this that and the other, nothing better to be at – there are far more serious transgressions by motor vehicle users that go unnoticed and unpunished that should be the focus of lawmakers and gardai

    1. Art_Vanderlay

      Precisely – its window dressing. No way the Gardai are willing or able to enforce it properly; you can drive through red lights and talk on your phone IN YOUR CAR with impunitty in Dublin. They Gardai have higher pririorities.

  23. dhaughton99

    All the guards have to do is sit around Dame st and James’s st to nab the Dublin Bike types. They’ll clean up.

    Or maybe they could move the Pallas delivery trucks parked in every bike lane in Dublin.

  24. doncolleone

    you hardly see any coppers anywhere to implement traffic laws on cars, I’d surprised if I see any of these unfit scruffy lardons hoppin out of the bushes to give you a fine, also no cash on me brah, just give me a ticket

  25. Paolo

    All eminently reasonable just like the motoring offences that exist. I assume that the offences will be ignored in equal measure.

  26. Elaine

    On principle I have no issue with any breakers of these rules being fined, I obey the rules of the road when I cycle. That said, it would be nice if those who speed/overtake dangerously/cut me off/run red lights/park in permanent cycle lanes in cars/vans/trucks etc would also start seeing some comeuppance. They can cause a LOT more damage doing what they do but the fines (if they’re ever even handed out) are hardly weighted to reflect that.

    How about a fine for generally being a dangerous ass-hat irrespective of mode of transport?

    Also, without lights you are invisible, 100% behind that specific fine. @cyclops you’re being ridiculous if you think ‘taking it easy’ will save you from the other road users who can’t bloody see you.

  27. Mr. T.

    Garda traffic cars are always parked up outside Pearse Street station during rush hour.

    1. RandomNoise

      I’d also like a fine for the saps who sail past you when you’re stopped at red lights and stop on front of you. Then the lights change, you overtake them, and it happens again. Generally they’re covered in hi-vis and have panniers.

      Hi-vis vests are to cyclists like flashing hazard lights are to cars – have them on and the rules are suspended.

      1. dereviled

        Those dopes block pedestrians and present a hazard for turning vehicles.
        And they’re dopes.

      2. classter

        That is a real bone of contention for you? Really?

        You need to take a good, hard look at yourself.

  28. David

    Please miss, can we have a fine for drivers who dash up past cyclists and turn left just in front of them? It’s species of dooring. You could make a fortune.

  29. PintsAtBeaufort

    No punishment for the increasing number of ignorant phone zombies who have also taken to 2 wheels??

  30. Paulus

    In other news, there are other legitimate hand signals than “I’m about to take my life in my hands and veer right”.
    Sometime the fact that you are about to turn left is useful information to those who share the road with you…

  31. Sinabhfuil

    All of the offences listed would disappear if there were a proper network of *separated* cycle lanes – not the pothole- and slidey-manhole-cover-littered pretendy paths currently offered, and usually made unusable by the cars parked in them, or by their seasick waving up and down over dished paths, or by their being littered with smashed glass; but instead wide, considerately designed lanes separated from road and path by a kerb, and with their own system of traffic lights – the kind of cycle routes they have in civilised countries.

    But that wouldn’t be as nice a photo opportunity for Dimples Donoghue.

    1. scottser

      couldn’t agree more. there’s a particularly nasty one on the footpath on leopardstown road between the roundabout and the n11. it’s so badly designed and leaves little enough room for pedestrians to walk on that i just use the road as for most part there’s two lanes to overtake me on. so yesterday this moron in a 12 d black volvo screams at me to use the cycle lane when 100 yards ahead there was a guy with a walking stick in the middle of it. coming up to the lights at white’s cross he pulls in front of me and tries to push me to the kerb, making me swing out in traffic to avoid him. he get a kick to his car and a sustained bird-flip. just cos he didn’t get his weekly bl0w job doesn’t mean he had to take it out on me.

  32. Riz

    I cycle everywhere in Dublin. I own a car but rarely drive. Cyclists are by far the biggest danger on our city’s streets (close second is Taxi drivers but that’s for another comments section). In my opinion about 10% of cyclists obey the rules of the road and are properly kitted out. And cycling at night with no lights? That’s just amatuer. The cops should let the air out of the tyres of any muppets doing that.

    I think these “laws” should be tatooed onto the forheads of most cyclists in reverse so they can read them every morning in the mirror as they head out to work.

    1. scundered

      I would guess that figure is vastly off… about 50% of cyclists are good/bad. I too cycle everywhere. Maybe its very different depending on areas.

  33. rugbylane

    I have a fantasy:

    Starting Monday morning, every cyclist in Dublin obeys the rules of the road to the letter of the law.

    The traffic jams at rush hour caused by tailbacks of cyclists in front of the motorists would be friggin hilarious! Be careful what you want motorists, you just might get it !!

  34. Dave

    I have been a cyclist and a motorist and a pedestrian and generally obey the rules when travelling. I have jaywalked and I have cycled through red lights ( after making sure it was safe to do so) and way back I probably drove when under the influence of alcohol. But some cyclists seem to be oblivious to rules, to safety, and to other road users. My fear as a motorist is, that some gobshite on a bike, dressed in black, at midnight, with no lights on his bike, will go under my wheels and be killed or paralysed. I will have to live with that for the rest of my days because some idiot thought he was cool, saving the planet by cycling.

    1. scundered

      My fear, as one of the law abiding cyclists, is of drunks in cars who care neither for themselves or the lives of others.

Comments are closed.