Video: Irish bus company investigates driver who told cyclist "I'll run you over"

Close pass leads to on-camera confrontation

by John Stevenson   June 5, 2014  

Dublin bus driver

After one if its drivers was caught on video encroaching in a bike lane and then telling a cyclist he’d run him over, an Irish bus company has launched an investigation into the incident.

Dublin Bus has said it is investigating a complaint after a cyclist uploaded a video to YouTube that showed the bus entering a mandatory cycle lane. After rier Liam Phelan comes alongside the bus, the driver can be seen saying: “Just go in front of me, I’ll run you over, no problem.”

The incident allegedly happened on the morning of May 28 on Arran Quay, the busy one-way street that passes through Dublin’s centre on the North bank of the River Liffey.

“I’m not ashamed to admit i was a bit shaken by this encounter,” Phelan said in the captions on his video.

In a statement to theJournal.ie, Dublin Bus said it had recieved a complaint about an incident on May 28 involving a cyclist.

The company said: “All incidents or accidents are investigated fully and if any breaches are found, appropriate action is taken internally.”

Dublin Bus also said that all of its drivers are “trained to the highest standard”, with refresher courses every two years.

“All training undertaken by Dublin Bus includes a strong emphasis on cyclist safety, and in particular how drivers should at all times be aware of cyclists moving in and around their vehicles,” it said.

“This includes the importance of maintaining proper road position to afford adequate space to cyclists and raising awareness around the checking of blind spots where cyclists might suddenly appear.”

25 user comments

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Quote:
Dublin Bus has said it is investigating a complaint after a cyclist uploaded a video to YouTube that showed the bus entering a mandatory cycle lane.

Isn't that just a 'straight to the police' matter, if it was a mandatory cycle lane?

How are the Garda with bike-related matters? Anyone know?

posted by brooksby [88 posts]
5th June 2014 - 14:35

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This video needs to be shown to anyone who thinks that painted cycle lanes offer any serious protection to cyclists. They don't.

If that lane was fenced/posted off complete with a sizeable concrete kerb, the bus would never have gone near it.

Having said that, I wouldn't do what the cyclist in the video did. I'd back off, let the bus continue, and overtake him further down the road. It's simply not a good idea to remain alongside any vehicle for any length of time.

posted by Peowpeowpeowlasers [64 posts]
5th June 2014 - 14:59

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Passing on the inside of a bus... Applause

posted by mbell [30 posts]
5th June 2014 - 16:08

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mbell wrote:
Passing on the inside of a bus...

Whilst following the painted lines that the civic powers-that-be painted there for the "protection and guidance" of cyclists.

posted by brooksby [88 posts]
5th June 2014 - 16:35

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mbell wrote:
Passing on the inside of a bus...

Never a fantastic idea - BUT it was a mandatory cycle lane which the bus can't legally enter. So in that situation it *should* be safer to pass on the inside. But that relies on people obeying the law.

posted by GrahamSt [79 posts]
5th June 2014 - 17:50

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Not defending the response but at 0.00 cyclist filters up the outside of the bus at speed, after the helmet cammer commits to the cycle lane 'someone' is going to get squeezed.

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posted by CycCoSi [22 posts]
5th June 2014 - 17:57

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I did feel a little empathy with the driver as it appeared that there were bikes riding all over the place, left and right. I would have just backed off rather than attempt an undertake but I can see how the rider felt that he was entitled to do so. This vid should be played to all council town planners as evidence that cycle lanes are a bit grim at the best of times.

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posted by Bobbinogs [55 posts]
5th June 2014 - 18:27

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I don't think that the problem is with the crappy cycle lane but more with the rider in the video not being patient enough or having enough road sense to hang back and let ( the frequently stopping on the left) bus carry on in front until it next pulled over. The bus driver is a dick obvs.

posted by mbell [30 posts]
5th June 2014 - 18:38

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CycCoSi wrote:
at 0.00 cyclist filters up the outside of the bus at speed... 'someone' is going to get squeezed.

That guy in the red top filters up between the bus and the cars in the right lane. Seems like he has plenty of room without the bus (illegally) pulling left to let him past.

When we see him again at about 0:12 he is well clear of the bus which is still way off to the left.

posted by GrahamSt [79 posts]
5th June 2014 - 18:40

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mbell wrote:
...having enough road sense to hang back and let ( the frequently stopping on the left) bus carry on in front until it next pulled over.

It's a mandatory cycle lane though. Nerd There shouldn't be any bus stops there because that would require the bus to break the law to pick up passengers - which would be messed up even by UK road design standards.

posted by GrahamSt [79 posts]
5th June 2014 - 18:51

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That's me convinced then. I will now undertake buses when the paint on the road allows.

posted by mbell [30 posts]
5th June 2014 - 19:22

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Firstly this goes to show that lanes of this kind are far too narrow and encourage close passes. Bikes steer by leaning, and as we saw, you only need to lose a couple of inches and you're stuffed.

As for waiting behind the bus, of course I can see the wisdom in this, but how slow would the bus be going before you decide it's ok to use the lane provided for bikes? Would you wait behind a stationary bus? One of the big benefits of cycling is (or should be) not getting caught up in motorised traffic jams caused by single occupancy cars. Plus it's not uncommon to end up in this situation because the bus is overtaking.

Peowpeow is right that things would be very different with sensible width physically separated lanes.

posted by pmanc [115 posts]
5th June 2014 - 20:24

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Personally - having had a major, millimetres to spare, scare a few years back - I wouldn't have gone up the inside of the bus.

But looking at how close the bus passes the (stationary) cyclist at 1:07, I think it's the driver, not the bike rider who has the bigger issues here.

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posted by Simon_MacMichael [8012 posts]
5th June 2014 - 20:36

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I know its Ireland, but even here, unless the other lane is stationry or moving in queues, you can't undertake unless its a dual carriageway or there are double lines or physical segregation.

Believe it or not, motor vehicles only need 2 mirrors and the mandatory one is the drivers (off) side.....the second can be the interior. This is because the Highway Code doesn't expect things to come up on their inside.

You can't rely on motor vehicles to stay in lane, also despite views on here, they also drive into other motor vehicles, street furniture, pedestrians and basically everything, they don't single out cyclists to squeeze or collide with it's just that out of those groups, cyclists are best able to bang their window and remonstrate hence all the argy bargy

Retest every 5 years for a licence, now please, Europe wide. Too many drivers know only how to propel their vehicle forward pointing at a destination with no regard to others.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [523 posts]
5th June 2014 - 20:55

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mbell wrote:
I don't think that the problem is with the crappy cycle lane but more with the rider in the video not being patient enough or having enough road sense to hang back and let ( the frequently stopping on the left) bus carry on in front until it next pulled over. The bus driver is a dick obvs.

As you appear to be.

posted by Bikebikebike [77 posts]
5th June 2014 - 20:59

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mbell wrote:
Passing on the inside of a bus... Applause

He was in a cycle lane dude... There was nothing wrong with the cyclists actions there.

posted by christiandransfield [3 posts]
5th June 2014 - 21:02

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Flying Scot: It's a mandatory cycle lane, the bus driver committed an offence by moving into it. Also, it's perfectly legal to continue to make progress in your own lane - just cause a right-hand lane slows or stops doesn't automatically mean you have to if your lane is clear (with due care, etc).

posted by Paul J [595 posts]
5th June 2014 - 22:16

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Paul J wrote:
Flying Scot: It's a mandatory cycle lane, the bus driver committed an offence by moving into it. Also, it's perfectly legal to continue to make progress in your own lane - just cause a right-hand lane slows or stops doesn't automatically mean you have to if your lane is clear (with due care, etc).

I agree, bus driver should not enter the lane, but neither should the cyclist undertake a vehicle making progress, he shouldn't have moved up on it.

Doesn't excuse the toss pot driver in any way.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [523 posts]
5th June 2014 - 22:21

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Flying Scot: You shouldn't make progress in your own lane if lanes to the right aren't? That's a double-standard. I'm willing to bet a lot of money you wouldn't stop driving down a lane just because cars in a right-hand lane had stopped.

posted by Paul J [595 posts]
6th June 2014 - 7:54

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Read carefully what I've said Paul J .....you shouldn't undertake unless the outside lane has stopped or is 'moving in queues' . Of course you can pass if they're stopped.

The bus was moving forward normally, the bike accelerated up the inside after the incident, the bus driver is a nut, stay out his way, don't push further into danger. If that was a mobile crane.....would you have undertaken it, just because yore faster?

This was certainly the case in the early 1990's when I had to do all sorts of advanced driving to become a defensive driving instructor, I've taught bodyguards, police, diplomats etc. so had to start from a high road standard. Now the law may have changed since then, if so I'm happy to be corrected.

I'm a rider first, a driver second, always have been.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [523 posts]
6th June 2014 - 8:09

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If you have big heavy cumbersome vehicles running with small light highly manoeuvrable ones in narrow crappy shared traffic systems with not enough space for both this is inevitably going to happen. It is just a respek territory thing. Step into my bit or hold me up I is going to get angry. They both need to chillax.

Btw the bus driver does look like kid politician Gove.

Airzound

posted by Airzound [276 posts]
6th June 2014 - 10:22

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Bobbinogs wrote:
I did feel a little empathy with the driver as it appeared that there were bikes riding all over the place, left and right. I would have just backed off rather than attempt an undertake but I can see how the rider felt that he was entitled to do so. This vid should be played to all council town planners as evidence that cycle lanes are a bit grim at the best of times.

Why would the driver not slow down to an appropriate speed given conditions?

If there are bikes everywhere, and legally, then the bus would seem to be driving inappropriately for the conditions, so without due care and attention.

Filtering down a mandatory cycle lane is fully legal, and the bus was breaking the law and utterly unnecessarily putting the riders' lives at risk.

posted by jacknorell [340 posts]
6th June 2014 - 11:26

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Bus driver 100% in the wrong. The only reason a bus should be in a mandatoy cycle lane is in an emergency to avoid a collision etc. The whole point of lanes like this is to allow cycles and motor vehicles to travel at their own pace without infringing on each other's space. It's not really an undertake/overtake situation as segregtion *should* be total.

That said, don't bother getting into an argument in the street. No good will come of it. Just report it to the police/bus company if you wish.

posted by Matt eaton [395 posts]
6th June 2014 - 12:29

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……. report it to the police???? Are you serious? You cannot be serious! Maybe the Irish police are more proactive than their counter parts in the UK who would laugh at you if you even tried to report this. This is such a non event escalated by a cyclist who is a bit of a dick. Yeah sometimes boundaries get over stepped but waste police time?

Airzound

posted by Airzound [276 posts]
6th June 2014 - 16:54

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Hmmm.

Bus driver a d!ck - unable to follow a pretty clear rule, should be sent back for retraining just for that. Also, ideally, shouldn't be allowed to drive just because of his attitude - pity there's no way to get people with so little empathy for other human beings off the road permanently.

On the other hand, cyclist is a moron. The problem with arguing with idiots is that you need to get down to their level to make any headway, and he's clearly determined not to lose that one...

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posted by adamthekiwi [43 posts]
6th June 2014 - 17:38

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