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Cycling - a dangerous sport?

Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by GiddyG, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Now my youngest son is getting a little bit older, we decided we'd teach him to ride a bike while on holiday with my parents in France. The roads where they live see a couple of cars a day and the odd tractor. For most of the time, the kids round and about have the roads to themselves.

    When we got home, we took the plunge and bought the three of us bikes, with the intention that we'd take them with us when we go camping; however, we'd also start cycling to and from school instead of taking the car (currently parking close by and walking the last 500 yards).

    We went to school for the first time on the bikes this morning, and it didn't seem too bad; this evening was terrifying! I was up front, with Alex in the middle on his bike, and Julie bringing up the rear. We were on the road because there are no cycle paths near us, and we thought that taking to the pavement would be unfair on pedestrians, given we're suppsoed to be on the road when riding bikes.

    I tell you... we have stupid idiots driving around Lincoln's roads. They don't give a monkey's about cyclists, whatever their age. We had cars overtaking us while we were overtaking parked cars, cars pulling out from side roads behind and in front, with one nearly knocking Julie off her bike.

    So, we want to be greener but we have two choices: ride on the pavement and cause grief for pedestrians or go back to using the car.
     
  2. Arroryn
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    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    Cycling in this country is a pathetically horrible catch 22. There are very few sensible cycle lanes. Motorists don't want you on the road, and pedestrians don't want you on the paths. Only in London have I seen cyclists treated with a modicum of respect. Mind you, the small batch of cyclists that don't want the rules to apply to them and run reds or ignore zebra crossings make it bad rep for the lot of us.

    Not sure whether the paths or roads are the worst. By personal bias I have to say roads. I have a permanent cyst of bone on my left shoulder from the impact of falling off my bike at 15mph or so, around ten months ago. As I landed head first, thank Jesus I had the sense to wear a helmet. Skidded on debris on a poorly maintained road and hit a curb.

    No. Cycling in Britain isn't safe. And I don't expect that to change any time soon.
     
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  3. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Oh we do have cycle lanes in Lincoln, but they seem to disappear into nothing and then reappear a few tens or hundreds of yards down the road. People must have spare cash in the council coffers, decide it'd be nice to win votes by showing concern for cyclists. You only really appreciate how ridiculous it all is when you come to use it.

    It's nowhere near as ridiculous though, as the safe cycle routes the council gives details of... you need to get in a car to get to most of them!
     
  4. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    That's what I mean by pathetic cycle lanes, though at least you have some. In Coventry, the cycle lane would be more commonly known as 'the gutter'... Lovely :)

    And don't even get me started on Sustran's back of beyond 'safe cycle routes' sheesh. You're lucky I'm posting this from my Blackberry, otherwise you wouldn't get me off my soapbox. Lol :)
     
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  5. postman

    postman Byte Poster

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    After a while you'll get used to it, learn to treat the road as your own and don't let the car/vans intimidate you (I have to use a bike for work and TBH I just ignore other vehicles):D

    BTW get yourself a good helmet and some sort of Hi-Vis vest.
     
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  6. Rover977

    Rover977 Byte Poster

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    Cycling off-road is OK eg mountain biking, or dedicated cycle tracks where there is no traffic, but cycling on public roads is definitely risky. The reason I say this is because a former colleague of mine in a previous company, a seasoned long-distance cyclist, was killed a number of years back when a lorry hit him whilst he was out cycling. Everyone who knew and worked with him was utterly shocked, especially as he was the most savvy person you could think of as regards cycling. Also a top UK professional cyclist was recently killed in a similar accident whilst out training in the north of Scotland. I used to do it a lot, but now I don't think its safe especially as I also have been 'brushed' by a fast moving lorry on one occasion. If I had kids I'd want them to stick to off road cycling, but i suppose some areas are better than others. Bottom line is if you don't think its safe then it probably isn't.
     
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  7. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    I'd love to be able to cycle to and from work for the exercise and gas savings, but cars scare me. :eek:
     
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  8. twizzle

    twizzle Gigabyte Poster

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    I'd love to do the same, but cycling 35miles there and back would kill me... assuming the cars on the A14 dont first!
     
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  9. Mr.Cheeks

    Mr.Cheeks 1st ever Gold Member! Gold Member

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    Noel would give a good response - he does it more often than i "do it"

    Anyhow, where is he nowadays?
     
  10. UCHEEKYMONKEY
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    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    I guess we should assume your talking about cycling and not some other activity?:twisted::twisted::wink::tongue:tune
     
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  11. UCHEEKYMONKEY
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    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    I agree, even with cycle lanes, people still cut me up!:rolleyes: I cycle to work every day, i try and take a route away from the main traffic even if it is longer. Just to be safe!:biggrin

    I guy couldn't be bothered to wait and cut me up at the junction:cry: few minutes later I caught up to him near the traffic lights. I could see his drivers window was open. So in a stealth attack style slowy edge up to his window.8) I could see he was eating his breakfast (Macdonalds). I waited for the lights to change to red/yellow before moving to his window and shouting as loud as I could "W@NKER" and then pedal as fast as I could off down the road. He must of dropped his sandwhich, because the car didn't move and all I could hear was people tooting their horns.

    :hhhmmm a bit of roadrage at 7:30am on monday morning not a good start to the working day!8)
     
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  12. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Well, we did the same trip this morning. Alex n his mum did part of the journey (the main A road) on the pavement, but I stayed on the road all the way.

    We dropped the little fella off at school, and we were trying to get onto the road and some stupid (and I do mean THICK - see? I'm getting brassed off even thinking back to it) c@w had a go about our bikes being in the way! Well, if the people stopped on the pavement having a chinwag about last night's telly or the new live-in lover would move, we could move our bikes, don't you know?

    Then, when cycling back home, some prat in a T reg Vauxhall Zafira tried to whip in past me sharpish and almost took my front wheel away from me.

    Still, it makes for an exciting start to the day...
     
  13. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    It's suicidal, that's what it is :dry

    I'm seriously considering B-roading and walking Land's End to John O'Groats, over stages over the course of a month. Bikes are for nut jobs. Motorbikes are for cyclists who fell off and hit their heads too hard, and now think they need something faster :rolleyes:
     
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  14. UCHEEKYMONKEY
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    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    I was thinking of placing a large speaker and microphone on my Bicycle, so when I am turning corners I can announce it to everyone (very loudly) because despite having a Hi Vi jacket, relectors and lights and sticking my arm out to signal. They still don't see it! What do you think??

    Or maybe a battle bike, with spike, rocket launcher, machine guns? :tongue::biggrin
     
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  15. Arroryn
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    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    You need indicators buddy
     
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  16. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    That's pretty much what Alex said... he wants tyre shredders on his wheels, so as cars go past to near they get their tyres mangled. 8)
     
  17. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Thay are SOOOO cool! I wonder if I can sneak to Halfords, get three sets, put them on the bikes later tonight without Julie noticing... waddya reckon guys? :biggrin
     
  18. UCHEEKYMONKEY
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    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    Hey! that looks like an excellent idea:thumbleft

    Only thing is...I'm not sure if it's big enough for those idiots on the road to see:dry


    What about This?


    [​IMG]
     
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  19. UCHEEKYMONKEY
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    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    what about lasers (Like on that James Bond Film) that cuts the car body away from the base?:biggrin
     
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  20. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Nice idea... I'll tell Alex! :twisted:
     

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