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arbell9

Is cycling on the road just too dangerous now?

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I went out with Caitlin (14) and Calum (10) this week for a cycle out and around the lanes where I live. On two occasions I had what can only be described as a near miss/death experiences. One was two guys in a Fairlady who overtook the 3 of us blind on a humpback bridge which bared left. He had to cut in by me to avoid a head on collision, he gave himself about 2 feet spare on the drivers side but on mine got within 2-3 inches. I was close enough to reach in a change the radio station for them. I know this road well so i reckon his approach speed would have been about 40-50 . So off we continue with my kids shocked at how close I was to being hit when about 2 miles further on a car passed within 2 feet at high speed, they didn't slow to avoid us, but instead barged through just missing us and the car in the opposite direction. Past experience I have found lorry drivers to be particularly bad but everyone on this outing slowed down and overtook properly. Respect to them on this occasion.

So are the roads just too dangerous now? Is it irresponsible to take your kids out for a ride on them? I have been mulling on this for two days and wonder if i should stick to off road riding in forests etc.

Anyone else have second thoughts about venturing out onto the roads on a bicycle??

Al.

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Wendy used to cycle to work to keep fit (3 miles or so) but after so many near accidents on the Hethersett Road she stopped.

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I used to do a load of bike riding,but your right car drivers cut you so dam close these days no one seem to want to give you any room what so ever,in my case 90% seem to be the old duffers and not the kids in there hatches.

If you want a family bike ride the only place to go is the water reservoirs, most seem to be geared up to cycle round these days,im sure theres one in your area somewhere. :shuriken:

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The number of cyclists injured on British roads is 50% of the number of car occupants. Now work out how many more cars there are than cyclists.

I'd not take the kids on the road mate, people don't give a stuff unfortunately or rate their ability to miss you higher than it is. When I ride I tend to, on narrow lanes, take up so much room by lane positioning that people have to slow to pass and it makes me feel safer but it certainly seems a matter of time rather than what if for when an accident happens.

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Totally agree with Bibs. I've done a lot of road cycling in the past, and the only way to survive is be very positive in your road positioning and give lots of positive hand signals, of the directional kind!

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I'm a regular cyclist, luckily we have a cycle path all the way from here, a few Ks south of Coffs Harbour into the town centre.

The perplexing thing for me is to came across (when driving) a group of cyclist three abreast on the road past the airport, ignoring the cycle way in an 80 k section !

And it's our own local cycling club.

I'm wary and make sure I have been seen and my intentions are known

Also I'm aware of having an MP3 player blasting in my ears, you need your audible senses about you.

In saying all that Coffs Harbour could hardly be described as a high volume traffic area.

Oh and I've got a loud klaxon horn rather than piddly little bell.

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My son is no longer allowed to cycle on roads after his crash (not his fault). Liz has laid that rule down to him. He drives his car to the end of the freeway near us which has a dedicated bicycle path that goes all the way from our end to Perth 89kms. Jarryd used to ride home from school and rode on the 3 foot wide shoulder of the main road. He regularly heard semi trailers with their LHS wheels running along the rumble strip on the lane edge marking. Got to the point that I would ride out on my Beemer and sit behind him with my hazards on to make cars change lane to go around him. And even then we had people nearly hit me and cut back in.

Unfortunately, some people just don't care or consider pushies a nuisance.

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Is cycling on the road just too dangerous now?

Yes.

The students throw out and leave behind just about anything (only yesterday i was given a 30GB ipod left behind by a student, no lie!).

When they have finshed their time at oxford there are bike racks full of bikes they just leave behind (no point taking a bike back to japan or america, even if it cost £500 and you only used it twice) besides, they did not work for the money to buy it so it's not an issue (see ipod above). Anyhow, we have a 'bike cull' and you put a bid in for whatever one you want, the money goes to the porters.

I got a suspension bike, ace nick, for £25 last year. I had not owned a bike for about ten years.

Got it home and went out on the roads for a ride.

I felt as fragile as a F***ing Egg!!!!!!!

Sod that forever!

:D

To many drivers like me about. By that i mean that i think cyclists are 'road lice'.

There is a ten mile B road into oxford i use, one cyclist in the morning is responsible for hundreds of cars slowing, going down through their gears, waiting to pass, pulling out, accelerating, going up through the gears. literally hundreds of cars every day that would otherwise have stayed in the same gear. Lets be honest, that guy on the bike would cause less polutuion if he was in a car as well.

Not his fault - there is no path or cycle lane - but if there was...

You'd get this: the main roads out of oxford have cycle lanes in green on the path next to them. But the cyclists still use the road as they dont have to stop and give way as they cross side roads. On a daily basis i'm stuck behind a cyclist, waiting for a gap in traffic to overtake, while all the time there is a cycle lane next to them, empty.

Like i say, my attitude to cyclists is mirrored back at me when i went out on a bike, i felt like no-one gave a stuff about me.

:)

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I was hit by a car at 45 mph and went head first through the windscreen of a Volvo 850. It was 50/50 if I was going to live. I've still got the scares and MRI scans. So I'm a bit more cautions about roads now.

Before I used to take cycling seriously, doing 100 mile runs, that was when there was half the traffic on the roads and cars weren't so fast. I wouldn't do it now.

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Just a thought, if governments were serious about us using our cars less they would give better public transport and cycle-ways.

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Not so much the cyclists but I really get upset when there are sidewalks or pathways and people don't use them. In in one case this woman (and I don't mean adolescent or younger) decides to roller blade in the absolute middle of the road with her mp3 player blasting into headphones. I really wanted to lean on the horn but was patient and gave a stare as I passed slowly by, but it was beyond her comprehension (totally oblivious that anyone was coming up behind her.....all that mattered is she was having fun), The other pet peve of mine is when runners must get their daily fix when it's a blizzard or rainstorm out and some are running/walking WITH (not against)car traffic!!! I always slow when I see them,but I'll really feel bad for the poor sod that runs into one under these conditions who just couldn't see them (and yes some have no reflective wear on, even dark clothes when walking at night!!! ) "Share the road" is the catchphrase, but what ever became of common sense when pathways/sidewalks are provided (and even plowed in winter) and those people must do it under the worst weather at all cost??? ( tracks are in abundance at the schools with indoor tracks for inclement weather) We also have bike paths along the Erie canal and on abandoned railway beds. Once again, in my town the bikes seem to be the least of the offenders and for the most part are aware with their mirrors and seldom do I see them riding side by side. :wallbash:

(vent over)

Edited by comem47

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Cycle paths are a total waste of money; cyclists don't use them. Of course they don't; nobody would use any road which required you to stop at every junction and even disappeared from time to time. Lines painted on the pavement don't cut the mustard for any cyclist past the trainer wheel stage. Once you get rolling nicely on a bike, you don't want to slow down, let alone stop....some years back I participated in the Fete du Velo in Paris...hundreds, maybe thousands of cyclists with a Police escort...it was magnificent! Did quite a bit of the Tour de France stuff, a group of us broke away and went flat out down the Champs Elysees.....wonderful. The following year, before the event started, the Gendarme in charge gave us all the Heavy Word.....no breakaways, no high speed stuff. Chiz!!

In France, with the cycling culture, motorists are far more cycle friendly and one feels safer than one does in the UK. Paris is pretty cycle friendly, the cyclists use the taxi lanes and it seems to work well. However, in general, I think riding bicycles on the road is now taking your life in your hands...or hoping the rest of the road users miss you...some cyclists disregard any vestige of commonsense and don't bother with any of the road traffic laws. The sooner they get wiped out the better....Darwin had something to say about that sort of behaviour!

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Good topic Alex, as I'm also bike hunting at the moment to maintain the new streamline look. Bought a car bike rack last week so just need the bike now.

Am I going to take it on the road? Most likely No. I used to cycle around 25 miles per day but that was 20 odd years ago. So have I turned into a wimp or are some roads like gambling with life/death? I recon probably both - way more hazardous places than they used to be and I've probably lost some bottle.

As far as taking my kids out, I would absolutely love to but just don't trust the attitude and standards of other road users so don't want to expose my kids to what I might live to regret.

I'll be sticking to off road cycle paths of which we are lucky with the choice around us.

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Absolutely no comment. The last time I talked about cyclists I got into trouble with cycling action groups, Mps and councils., ended up having to make an apology and do a 40 mile bike ride as an act of good faith and no hard feelings.

The actual question should be, "are cyclists too dangerous for the roads these days?"

not to mention, no tax, insurance or .......no I am not getting into al that again

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Another factor for oxford:

It has a huge number of cyclists, mainly students.

These are young people from countries all over the world, most of which will not have passed a driving test in their own country yet.

Many of which will have never seen a copy of the uk's Highway code.

And for many the first time they get on the bike it will be the first time they have even seen the british road system.

And none of them wear helmets.

And none of them have lights.

:thumbsup:

But for some reason thats perfectly fine. The univerity makes it ok.

I'm not kidding, if 20 of us guys on the forum met up in an oxford park during the week and spent the whole night getting drunk, then we left all the bottles and rubbish behind and went into mcdonalds at 7am, absolutely hammered, loud and antisocial, to have breakfast? Thats right, the police would be called. BUT if we had university gowns on, deep voices, curly hair and bumfluff beards? Fine, absolutely fine.

:)

But seriously i think it's mental you can come from another country, hop on a bike and hit the road. A few years back a guy from Japan was injured and it transpired he had been trying to ride between the double yellow lines, thinking they were a cycle lane...

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it will be the first time they have even seen the british road system.

But seriously i think it's mental you can come from another country, hop on a bike and hit the road.

No differant with a car mate. Our law says you can drive in the UK for up to 12 months on that Countrys licence.

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No differant with a car mate. Our law says you can drive in the UK for up to 12 months on that Countrys licence.

Yeah, same as if i drive abroad.

It's crazy isn't it? If i took a driving test in france/germany/holland/spain/italy etc then i 100% would fail, no doubt at all.

Yet i can drive there...

:D

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Cyclists have brakes and steering, which is more than you can say for the inconsiderate ****s who take neddy out for a meander on public roads. Share and share alike when it comes to roads, and be considerate, but don't share the responsibility with me of having to second-guess and avoid a ton of barely sentient dog food that has no reliable brakes, lighting or steering. Sorry for the thread hijack, but I detest horses on roads. [*]

On topic - yes it is too dangerous to cycle on the roads now. Even when you find a cycle lane of a decent width, it is full of dog cr*p and misaligned drain covers. In Derby I was lucky enough to have a cycle path all the way into the city at the bottom of the road and used it a lot. The thing that bugs me is that the police treats us like terrorists with this dim 'speed kills' nonsense (inappropriate use of speed....yes) yet the majority of cyclist deaths on the road seem to be caused by 'inappropriate use of mirrors' by the drivers (and lorry/bus drivers are certainly no better).

And PaulC, a visit to Cambridge during term time would make you question whether these places do indeed contain the levels of intelligence alleged. Cambridge - the only place where I use the park and ride a) for my own safety and b) for the sheer entertainment factor....sometimes, it is better than watching 'Jackass' :thumbsup:

//R

[*] Mrs S has named that particular rant 'number 37' in a series of 120, and it invariably leads on to 'number 38' which is the licensing laws applicable to horseboxes, which is almost certainly off topic. Apparently, I'm turning into a grumpy.

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And PaulC, a visit to Cambridge during term time would make you question whether these places do indeed contain the levels of intelligence alleged.

Am well aware mate.

I accepeted long ago that someone can't be a genius at everything. I've been working in the Colleges for 24 years now and sometimes it seems that with some folk, being very clever at one thing is at the expense of being dimmer than the average guy at something else.

I've seen beefburgers and sausage rolls put in toasters and empty whole buildings out. I've seen washing machines started with the powder drawer full of fairy liquid. There are professors that i see on TV who are regarded as geniuses in their field, i've seen these same people leave the bath running and flood buildings, or deciding to go out and leave the rice on the boil, for an hour.

And they ride bikes everywhere.

They are just like everyone else at most stuff, just a lot cleverer at stuff everyone else is largely unconcerned with...

:D

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It's not that cycling is dangerous on the Road, its the speeding and bad driving that are the issue. I went on a Pistonhead run the other saturday, never, ever again will i go on one. They drove like absolute Pricks. speeding along country lanes, there could be horses, cyclists, people pulling out etc, its a public road not a race track.

I live on a road where there is constant speeding even with so called speed restrictions I have raised it with the Police who dont give a stuff, as they are to busy sitting on there backsides doing sod all, but managed to turn out in force and stand around drinking coffee when there was a fatality. I have now raised it with my local counciller, and will be a pain in the arse till something is done. I do like to park my old banger legally so they have to slow down, that gives them a shock when they are doing 50 in a 30.

So yes cycling on the road is dangerous, but mainly due to the lack of enforecement of speed limits and bad driving.

Mind you the cyclists in london are somethng else cutting across redlights, crossings, inside lorries etc, in London it is Darwinian selection that culls them.

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There is an excellent cycle track in Cambridgeshire...more usually known as the "Misguided Bus Lane" which is a public disgrace and a total waste of tax payers money. But it is perfectly useful as a cycle lane from St. Ives to Cambridge. If you are a cyclist in the area please use it before the muppets at Shire Hall wake up and put something else on it.

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