Press Release7 November 20192,550 Dublin Bus drivers will soon experience what it feels like to cycle on the roads of the capital with a brand new virtual reality (VR) training initiative. Launched today, Thursday, 7 November, by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross in Dublin2Bike, Dublin 2, the new bus driver training initiative uses the latest VR technology to simulate the cycling experience in order to deliver a better understanding of the challenges faced by cyclists on the roads of the capital. The training video footage is taken from a 360o perspective of a cyclist on an actual cycle journey from Parnell Square to Camden Street during a typical morning commute across Dublin city centre. Shown on Oculus Go, the ten minute video was devised by the Environmental, Health and Safety Department of Dublin Bus and produced by VRAI, a Dublin based company. It will be used in Dublin Bus’ dedicated training centre for all new drivers and as part of bi-annual driver awareness training for existing drivers. Speaking at the launch Minister Ross said “I am delighted to be here, today, to launch the Dublin Bus Virtual Reality Cycling Driver Training Experience. This is a really important development in driver training which will harnesses the latest VR technology available to deliver real benefits for bus drivers and cyclists. It will help increase driver awareness of the challenges facing cyclists and will most importantly make cycling in Dublin a safer experience.”Dublin Bus is an early adaptor of the most advanced technologies in its objective to be leaders in road safety in Ireland. It was the recipient of a Road Safety Authority (RSA) ‘Leading Lights in Road Safety’ Award 2017 for its commitment to promoting road safety within its organisation and for making a significant contribution to safer roads. Ray Coyne, CEO of Dublin Bus said “As the largest public service transport provider in Ireland, we move up to 500,000 people a day around the capital. Increased use of public transport, coupled with an increase in cycling and increased on street priority, will play a key role in enhancing the safety of vulnerable road users while reducing congestion. Through our innovative use of technology and virtual reality, we can now bring a cyclists view and travel experience to our 3,500 employees through our enhanced training programme. As our cities roads become more congested a long term solution for the benefit of the majority must be delivered. Public transport and active mobility modes, including cycling, can deliver this solution”.Dublin Bus drivers are trained to the highest standard and complete their world class training in a dedicated in-house training centre in Phibsboro where all drivers receive a Certificate of Professional Competency (CPC). In keeping with Dublin Bus’ goal of continuous improvement all drivers receive bi-annual driver awareness training. Dublin Bus continuously develops its driver training programme and seeks to use the most innovative, efficient technologies to produce expertly trained and competent drivers.-ends-For further information: Carol Donohue, Communications Dept., Dublin Bus. Tel: (01) 703 3143 M: (087) 388 6927 Nigel Goggin, Conway Communications. Tel: (01) 661 9728 M: (087) 604 1161Notes to Editor Approximately 1,800 buses and 12,200 cyclists* (*National Transport Authority Canal Cordon Report 2018) share the road during peak times.