Crackdown on trucks urged as cyclist crushed by cement mixer
CAMPAIGNERS last night called for city restrictions to be imposed on heavy goods lorries following the death of a cyclist who was knocked off his bike and crushed under a cement mixer.
The victim, believed to be in his mid-30s, was cycling over a busy bridge in the Harold's Cross area of Dublin when he was struck by the large truck.
He died at the scene despite the efforts of bystanders who rushed to his help and emergency services who fought to save his life. The victim's name has not been released pending notification to his family.
His death brings to 22 the number of cyclists who have been killed in the greater Dublin area over the past seven years. Some 14 cyclists were killed across the country last year alone.
Gardai were appealing last night for witnesses to the crash, which happened at about 10.30am at the intersection of Grove Road and Harold's Cross Bridge at the Grand Canal.
The mangled frame of the man's bicycle remained at the scene as gardai cordoned off the area to carry out an investigation of the accident.
Horrified witnesses described seeing the cyclist tossed and thrown under the undercarriage of the four-axle truck as it drove over him.
Sean Prunty, who runs a property business on Harold's Cross Road, said he looked out when he heard a loud crash outside.
"I heard the noise. It was like a metal noise and sounded as if there was something falling off the back of the truck," he said.
"I saw a truck and then I saw a bicycle on the road -- the bicycle was mangled. But it was only when I stood up and walked over towards the front door that I saw the body on the road."
David Maher, spokesman for the Dublin Cycling Campaign, which is lobbying to make the capital a safer place for cyclists, said the death underscores the need for greater restrictions on Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGV) in the city centre.
Of the 22 cyclists killed in Dublin over the past seven years, 16 were struck by HGVs, four were knocked down by cars and one was fatally injured after being struck by a bus, he said.
"Consistently 80pc (of fatalities) are all from articulated lorries," he told the Irish Independent last night.
Dr Mike McKillen, spokesman for the national cycling organisation cyclist.ie, said it was outrageous that lorry drivers are not given special training to enable them to share the road safely with cyclists.
"This is a scandal,'' he said.
Meanwhile, a young woman remained in serious condition at St James's Hospital last night after she was struck by a Dublin Bus in Dublin city centre on Tuesday night.
She is believed to be in her 20s or 30s and was struck by the number 123 bus at College Green shortly before 7pm.