Sixty-five drivers per month fined for parking in cycle lanes
An average of 65 motorists per month are being fined for parking in cycle lanes following a Garda clampdown.
Cycling groups have welcomed new statistics from the Department of Justice showing the average number of Fixed Charge Notices (FCNs) issued for parking in a cycle lane increased from 22 per month in 2016 to 65 per month this year.
In 2018, there were 705 FCNs issued to motorists for parking in cycle lanes, compared with 471 in 2017 and to 268 in 2016.
In the first six months of this year, 389 fines were issued.
Cycling advocate Deirdre Duffy said the figures show how more motorists are being detected using cycle lanes.
"This increase is welcome, but we must continue to work to ensure that cycle lanes are kept free of cars to ensure the safety of all road users," she said.
"Drivers may not appreciate the obstruction that they are causing to cyclists by parking in cycle lanes, often forcing cyclists to move out on to busy roads, which puts them at risk," she said.
"It is not a risk worth forcing cyclists to take for the sake of convenience," she added.
"It is vital that we continue to raise awareness about this issue, so motorists know the consequences of their actions.
"Gardai are clearly taking a proactive interest in policing our cycling lanes and ensuring that people adhere to the rules of the road."
The Garda Policing Operation Plan for this year has a particular focus on road safety for vulnerable road users.
"We all have a responsibility to share the roads for the safety of cyclists, pedestrians and drivers," Ms Duffy added.
Earlier this month, the Herald reported that the Bus Connects' dedicated cycle lanes aim to boost safety for cyclists.
The NTA says commuting to work by bike has increased 43pc since 2011, and if it is made safer, more people could consider cycling as an option.
The three key issues cycling groups want to see addressed by the NTA are discontinuous cycle lanes, bus stops in the cycle lanes and shared space.
Discontinuous cycle lanes are when there are breaks in the lanes.