Driver’s say the problem with cyclists….

Have you got a list of things that you bring up when it comes to cyclists and what you think about their actions.

This week after Michelle did a course delivery for Van Smart and Safe Urban Driving, the drivers provided the cycle trainers with a list of issues with cyclists that we went through to explain, along with a list of positives, so is this a true reflection of how drivers feel?

Negative points raised:

Incompetency….some cyclists are not as confident as others on the road causing hazards and there is no test to govern this or improve it.

How could there be a test on an activity for all age groups from young to old that is there to promote health. Cycling proficiency has now returned to schools and there is 2 hours free training for any cyclist in London, along with free courses in other cities for children.

Running Red Lights…this is usually to get a head start before the lights turn green so not to disturb drivers on the road, however, sometimes not always the case and can be just that they know so many cyclists do it and it has become the norm.  However, it is illegal and everyone should obey the rules of the road.

Signalling….lack of it and not letting drivers know which direction they are going in. There should only be 2 occasions where this happens, going uphill or downhill or when they feel they are in danger if they signal, for example if it affects balance.

Swerving….this causes a hazard and can be portrayed as lack of road sense, however is usually to avoid potholes or iron grids.  Do motor vehicle drivers not swerve to avoid potholes too?

Not Using Cycle Paths….the consensus is that they are there and so should be used.  However, the infrastructure may be there in some places but it is not maintained and can have roots and weeds growing, potholes and uneven surfaces so does not encourage use.  This is also because sometimes it is more convenient for their route to use the road and they are road users so have an entitlement to use the road if they wish.

Fitness…we are being encouraged as we have an obesity problem and want to get people keeping fit and exercising, at all ages, using a cost effective method.
No Tax….some see this as a negative, however, there is no tax on cyclists as a bike is not emitting any emissions.
No insurance…some cyclists do opt to take out insurance, and most home insurance policies cover theft of a bike, however this does encourage a cheaper way of travelling.
Cheaper…after the initial outlay of the cost of the bike, there is very little maintenance, no fuel costs, no tax/MOT/insurance and so can make an excellent way to travel which is cost efficient.

Quicker….in some cities, especially in cities like London, cycling is so popular because it is quicker that driving.
Any Age…cycling is a fit for all in terms of any person can ride a bike, there are no age restrictions.

At the end of the day we are encouraging cycling to promote health, reduce emissions and to try and reduce congestion on the roads.  Most people agree this is the way forwards however there are issues with everything and so an understanding from someone else’s perspective does make a huge difference.  Hopefully sharing this information has done that for you.

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