Cyclists on Aldo Moro Road face life-threatening danger from parked trucks

Trucks parked on cycling lane and ignored by local wardens force cyclists off into main thoroughfare on high-speed road

Cyclists who use their bicycles for their daily commute are making their anger clear with roads agency Infrastructure Malta, at seeing their cycle lanes taken over by parked vehicles.

In letter to IM boss Fredrick Azzopardi, the composer Alex Vella Gregory complained that trucks parking on Marsa’s Aldo Moro Road cycle lane were now daily occurrences which were restricting mobility and endangering the lives of cyclists.

His complaint was echoed by fellow cyclist Etienne Cutajar, who pinpointed the same issue on the Aldo Moro Road, snapping photos of truckers with parked vehicles on the cycle lane, while a LESA warden appeared oblivious to the infraction.

Cutajar said the situation left cyclists no option but to pull out onto the inner motorists’ lane to carry on forward. “It undoubtedly puts life at a very high risk and may even cause a fatal accident,” Cutajar said.

“I urge authorities to put up concrete bollards at Aldo Moro Rd. at the stretch of road shown in the photos in order to isolate the cyclists’ lane from the rest of the traffic.”

In a complaint to IM, Vella Gregory pointed out that there were multiple issues adding to the dangers faced daily by cyclists on the Aldo Moro Road.

“All cycle lanes should be segregated from the main traffic lanes, particularly on the main road. No cycle lane should be wide enough for cars, still less trucks, to drive through, as is the case with the segregated cycle lane in the middle of the junction.

“The disappearing cycle lane on the corner with Schembri Batteries is dangerous to both cyclists and motorists. That needs to be redesigned to eliminate the sharp bend.”

Vella Gregory also said speed cameras were required along Sir Paul Boffa Avenue. “There are no junctions from Regional Road all the way to Paola, meaning that  cars are reaching very dangerous speeds since there are no hindrances or checks. Given that Sir Paul Boffa Avenue is around the bend from the Marsa junction, cyclists and pedestrians are often caught unawares. A similar situation is also happening along Vjal Santa Luċija.”

A terse reply from Azzopardi did come Vella Gregory’s way: “Your email noted and I am sure that TM and LESA in copy will issue fines for this infringement.”

Vella Gregory was unfazed by the dismissive attitude. “You may choose to dismiss this email as ‘yet another complaining cyclist’, but these are problems that are endangering cyclists, motorists, and pedestrians.”

“That does not solve the intrinsic design problems of the whole project, many of which have been pointed out to you repeatedly, as have been possible solutions.”