Dublin Bus called on to act to avoid “appalling” overtaking of father and son

A video of an “appalling” overtake by a Dublin Bus driver of a man cycling with his sons has prompted politicians to call on the company to act to reduce the number of similar close passes.

The video — which at the time of publication of this article is going viral and is climbing to 90,000 views — was taken on Grange Road in Baldoyle, Co Dublin. The video was captured using a 360 camera attached to the bicycle involved.

The cyclist involved moved out of the cycle lane around 50-60 metres before the overtake because the cycle lane was blocked by illegally parked cars. Fingal County Council is expected to start installing a quick-build segregated cycle lane at the location — bollards are to be added to the cycle lane with the aim of reducing illegal parking.

“It was definitely the closest pass I’ve ever experienced,” said Alan Downey, who posted the video. “The bus was inches away from me, it was so close I reflexively banged on the window to try to get the driver to move a bit further out but they seemed to move in closer.”

He added: “Any little wobble or bump and there was no room for error. My 5-year-old son cycling beside me had to deal with the same situation.”

Downey said he plans to report the incident via the Garda TrafficWatch system on Monday.

On Sunday, he tweeted videos showing the bus driver overtaking closely when he was already overtaking a car parked in the cycle lane, as his son was cycling inside him.

The bus then has to stop at a red light around 80 metres ahead of where the driver made the overtake, leaving Downey and his son to wait behind the bus. Once the traffic light turns green, the Downey is left to stop again behind the bus when it stops at a bus stop another 50 metres beyond the junction.

Originally tweeted by Alan on September 19, 2021.
Originally tweeted by Alan on September 19, 2021.

Galway East TD, Ciaran Cannon (FG), said: “Absolutely appalling behaviour from a Dublin Bus driver. And their response? Fill out a form and we’ll get back to you. Please Garda Traffic, Eamon Ryan, Heather Humphreys, and Road Safety Authority can we make it simple for people to submit video evidence of incidents like this?”

Former Dublin City Lord Mayor, Cllr Hazel Chu said: “It probably shouldn’t need to be said but no kid needs to see their parent in a near-miss against a bus. As for the ‘he shouldn’t have moved out of the cycle lane’ comments. There were illegally parked cars on the lane and cyclists have as much right to the road as a motorist does.”

Cllr Oisín O’Connor (Green) said: “It’s beyond time that Dublin Bus and its CEO Ray Coyne address this issue head-on. This kind of thing happens hundreds of times a week across Dublin. Few people have cameras on their bikes, even fewer post to social media. Lack of action = Dublin Bus liable for any injury/death.”

Cian Ginty
I am editor of IrishCycle.com and have reported on and commented on cycling in Ireland for over a decade. My background is in journalism -- I have a BA in Journalism from DCU and HDip in Print Journalism from BCFE. I wrote about cycling for national newspapers, and then started CyclingInDublin.com for overflow stories. Later the website was re-branded to reflect a more national focus.

2 COMMENTS

  1. No mention of tackling illegally parked cars? Personal responsibility should come into play here, Dublin is not safe for cyclists. Inconsiderate parking accounts for many problems around the city.

    • Hi Gill — see the third paragraph: “Fingal County Council is expected to start installing a quick-build segregated cycle lane at the location — bollards are to be added to the cycle lane with the aim of reducing illegal parking”, and Cllr Hazel Chu also mentioned the illegal parking.

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