Brian O’Callaghan, aged 60, was cycling home to 5 College View on Western Rd at lunchtime on July 12 when the accident happened on Sheares St, Cork.
He cycled on the cycle lane and was struck by a car coming out on to Sheares St from Coach Lane. The car struck his front wheel, throwing him to the ground and damaging his bicycle.
Insp Gary McPolin characterised the motorist, Clare Whelan, as a decent and charitable woman who drove correctly yet offered to pay for the damage done to the bicycle.
Insp McPolin said in cross-examination of defendant, Brian O’Callaghan: “You are lucky you didn’t meet me. I wouldn’t have paid for your bicycle because you were in the wrong.”
Insp McPolin suggested to the cyclist that the only reason he made a complaint against the motorist afterwards was because he was not happy with the repair job done on the bicycle and that to this extent his complaint had been vexatious.
Mr O’Callaghan disagreed with that and said he suffered post-traumatic stress disorder after being knocked from his bicycle.
The inspector said the City Council cycle lane had arrows from the Mardyke direction toward the city and that it was a one-way lane and that the outgoing cycle lane was on Washington St/Western Road.
Mr O’Callaghan said there were no signs up on the Sheares St cycle lane to indicate it was only one-way towards the city.
“Have you made a complaint to the city council about the lack of signage?” the inspector asked. He replied, “It is not my place to tell [them] what to do.”
Judge Leo Malone said the cyclist did not have the right to cycle in the incorrect direction on the cycle lane and said: “I don’t accept he was not aware it was a one-way.”
He was convicted and fined €200 on a count that stated that on July 12, 2014 at Sheares St he did drive a vehicle, to wit a pedal cycle, without reasonable consideration for other persons using said place, contrary to the Road Traffic Act. Defence solicitor, William Harvey, indicated there may be an appeal of the case.