Modern driver training should cover in greater depth the vulnerability of cyclists in the cut and thrust of 21st Century Roads.
Long gone are the days of the advice “just give them a wide berth and everything will be ok”!
All drivers need to be more aware of motor cycles and pedal cycles, Bike Week should be the beginning of a better understanding between all road users.
To have a safer road experience in the future drivers, especially Learner drivers who are the drivers of the future, need to be coached and made aware of these vulnerabilities including, but certainly not limited to, the fact that cyclists may swerve or move out suddenly to avoid potholes, drains, puddles etc. They may be suddenly blown off course by the wind and some may not even look before changing direction, when moving out to pass parked cars for example.
Even though they are amongst the most vulnerable or road users I still see many running red traffic lights and worse still passing pedestrians on a crossing when lights are on red!
I understand that it is a minority but when you get met with “F*** off” when this is pointed out is it any wonder that motorists lose patience with the majority of cyclists who abide by the law and the Highway Code.
Motorists beware of potholes! Seem obvious to every driver? Report them here Fill that hole!
The damage they can cause to your car, punctures, buckled wheels and damaged suspension amongst some of the things.
What about if a cyclist is approaching one?
Do you slow down preparing to stop if necessary?
Do you give them more clearance?
Or do you just curse as you go past?
Cyclists do you follow the Rules in the Highway Code?
Do you always look before you change road positioning?
Do you always stop at red lights?
It is up to all road users to take responsibility for each other’s safety and try to avoid the “Them & us” culture that has been allowed to develop.
The following is some of the advice on THINK! A .gov website that all road users could benefit from reading.
THINK! Advice for when you’re driving
- Look out for cyclists, especially when turning – make eye contact if possible so they know you’ve seen them
- Use your indicators – signal your intentions so that cyclists can react
- Give cyclists space – at least half a car’s width. If there isn’t sufficient space to pass, hold back. Remember that cyclists may need to manoeuvre suddenly if the road is poor, it’s windy or if a car door is opened
THINK! Advice for when you’re cycling
- Ride positively, decisively and well clear of the kerb – look and signal to show drivers what you plan to do and make eye contact where possible so you know drivers have seen you
- Avoid riding up the inside of large vehicles, like lorries or buses, where you might not be seen
- Follow the Highway Code including observing ‘stop’ and ‘give way’ signs and traffic lights