The Cyprus Cycling Federation on Thursday called on the government to train car, bus and other drivers on how to protect cyclists, who are vulnerable road users.
Their plea came hours after 33-year-old cyclist Panayiotis Hadjinicolas lost his life in a hit-and-run accident. The victim leaves behind a 3-year-old child and a wife.
Police are looking for an ISUZU or a Chevrolet single or double cabin.
“Unfortunately, the Cyprus Police insist on taking action only for the training of cyclists in their obligations and there has been no action or campaign, which has often been suggested by the Cyprus Cycling Federation, for information and a wake-up call for drivers of motor vehicles regarding their own obligations and the rights of cyclists, a vulnerable group of users of the public roads,” their statement said.
The fact is, the federation added, that there has been an increase in the number of cyclist without them being protected and appropriate measures being taken, something that is a “blatant failure of our state”.
Police, the members say, need special training in how to handle complaints from cyclists who are being harassed or attacked, while drivers should be trained as a prerequisite to obtaining a driver’s licence. This is something the federation has been requesting for years but the cyclists’ needs have been completely ignored by police and the justice ministry.
The federation warned the ministry and the chief of police that unless this attitude changes not only will we mourn for more victims like Hadjinicolas, but the government will also be internationally exposed as having a “medieval culture”.
“We wish the state to take measures as a matter of urgency now and before we have the next victim among us,” the statement said.