A mock-up of a two-way cycle route along Dublin’s north quays proposed by Dublin City Council last year
About this time last year I was taken to hospital following a cycling accident. It was assumed that I had been hit by a motor vehicle.
After emergency surgery, my ankle was put back together as well as could be expected given the injury I sustained.
Unfortunately, I require further surgery in the hope of keeping arthritis at bay, followed by the inevitable complete replacement of the ankle joint in the years to come.
All of which means I experience daily discomfort and impaired movement. The cause of this accident was another cyclist.
My commute to work is a relatively simple 40-minute cycle, consisting of a short meander through suburban roads, then the rest on a dedicated cycle path. My bike is old and sturdy and I am adorned in day-glo and of course wear a helmet.
After the collision, my helmet was split open, my bike battered, and laptop bent! And I realised I was unable to walk. As I stood, leaning on my bike, a lycra-clad cyclist proceeded to shout at me and made to move off. Despite my protestations that I could not walk, he left the scene.
In my moment of need, a member of the fire brigade, caught in the morning traffic, came to my aid.
Due to the severity of my injury, I reported the incident to the Garda. Despite following up with local traffic cameras and the on-board cameras on Dublin Bus, no evidence was forthcoming to identify the cyclist. This is key, as one cannot then pursue any form of compensation.
If I had the misfortune of being hit by a motor vehicle, then at least there is a fund (managed by the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland) that could be availed of.
I, however, am left with no recompense for any and all future implications of the accident.
Are cyclists inherently unsafe, uninsurable, unethical and uncared for?
Pic: Cycle Dublin