Calls by a local councillor to make high-vis jackets “mandatory” for walkers and cyclists in speed zones above 50km/hr have been scaled down to a public information campaign following Monday’s meeting of Cork County Council.
Cllr Frank Flynn (Fianna Fáil), had proposed a motion that wearing high-visibillity jackets should be made mandatory for road users including pedestrians and cyclists, but he accepted the difficulties in policing any such regulation.
Instead, the council have agreed to write to the Road Safety Authority and the Department of Transport, asking for a public safety promotion of the wearing of high-vis jackets.
“The roads are narrow, and people are walking and cycling more than ever,” Cllr Flynn said. “The motion was all about making our roads safer. It’s going to be an outdoor summer and more people are on rural roads.”
Cllr Flynn said research showed people in hi-vis jackets could be seen at a distance of 500m, while without, that distance could be as little as 50m. Narrow country roads and an increase in non-car traffic were of safety concern.
“The message is Be Safe, Be Seen,” he said, saying that pedestrians and cyclists need to take personal responsibility for their safety on the roads,” he said, strtessing that motorists must also take responsibility, ‘drive within the speed limit, and more importantly, according to the conditions of the roads’, he said.