A local election candidate is calling on Galway developers and delivery companies to consider a "truck exclusion hour" in order to allow children to "cycle to school safely".
The Green Party's Galway City West candidate, and spokesperson for children, Pauline O’Reilly, is calling for trucks to be kept off the road from 8.30am to 9.15pm and from 2.30pm to 3pm, Mondays to Fridays.
“I’ve seen footage recently, captured by a concerned parent, where a truck is shown running a school child off the road," said Ms O'Reilly. "The traffic was moving slowly but the truck just squeezed the child out of the lane and she was forced to move her bike onto the pavement to continue. Our children have the right to travel safely to school without being run off the road by trucks.”
Ms O'Reilly said that if cycling is going to be a real alternative for Galwegians, "it must become a truly safe option, not just the preserve of the bravest souls among us – and that includes our kids.”
She pointed out how parents of children at Gaelscoil Mhic Amhlaigh and Knocknacarra National School have come together to run a ‘cycle school bus’, where adults cycle with the children to keep them safe.
“Cycling to school will improve our children's health, at a time when too many of them are sedentary, as well as keeping our air cleaner and our roads less crowded," she said. "For every child who cycles to school in the morning, that’s one car off the road, easing traffic congestion at a peak time of day."