So it comes as sad news that that 5 cyclists have lost there lives this month in London.
BUT as someone who rides in London every day to me it does not come as a surprise. Im glad to see the government is investing, but how many cyclists are road aware. Every day i see stupid things and jumping red lights is scratching the surface. I watched a guy today squeezing between a skip lorry and a bus and it was so close as they started to move i closed my eyes as i was sure he was going to get squashed.
Now i know “bikers” are no angels, and we often break the speed limits etc, BUT we also have outstanding breaking ability and are head to toe in protective gear. Cycles by comparison are SO SO vulnerable and seem not to notice.
While i think its terrible what happened i think education for this most vulnerable of all road users is key, building roads away from other road users is not going to help cyclists in traffic or on roads where there are other road users. Already some seem to think too ride side by side blocking a whole bus lane and holding up rush hour traffic is a smart thing to do. Riding round regents park are 3/4 abreast almost blocking the whole road a times when i leave and come home.
The volume of cyclists jumping lights is staggering, its prob a figure of around 30 or 40% if we as bikers jumped lights like this can you imagine the outrage!!
I know bikers take a lot of rap about speed, well truth be told on a sunday on good roads you might have a point BUT for the most part in town i sometimes think car driver mistake moneverability for speed and I’m far to aware of how f**ked I’m going to be if a skip lorry turns on me or a bus fails to see me, its not that he won’t stop its that he won’t even know he’s hit me and its something i think about everyday. Cyclists seem to be oblivious, they seem to have some “well you should stop as I’m a cyclist rule”
What I’m wondering is - what money is being spent to ensure cyclists understand how to ride, what traffic does and what to look for.
The only difference i feel between “us” and them is the education we constantly receive, from test level upwards. the reasons for wearing helmets, leather, back protectors etc and in town most cyclists can knock along at 25mph no problem almost keeping up with us in t-shirt, shorts and no helmet. Is it really any surprise so many people are getting hurt?
One thing i would also add is - i used to cycle in town a lot more than now, and in those days i never wore a helmet, its only since riding a motorbike i always wear a helmet and some sort of gloves to protect me hands. I wonder if most cyclists realise we don’t wear the the protection incase we come off at speed, we wear it incase some nob does not see us and takes us out in normal heavy traffic and that is when we are at our most vulnerable.