Blog Is this cycling behaviour safe and acceptable?
- Credit: PA
The mindless minority of drivers and cyclists give the rest a bad name – motoring editor Andy Russell came across a couple of riders who set the wrong example.
This is going to cause a backlash but I need to have a whinge about cyclists... well, actually only two but they give sensible, law-abiding, courteous bike riders a bad name – just as all motorists tend to be judged against the idiot minority.
The first confrontation – it could easily have been if I hadn't been unusually patient – was when I came up behind a cyclist on a very narrow road. He was in the middle of the single carriageway, but was not hanging around, so I happily tucked behind him and waited for an opportunity to pass safely.
Very soon a passing place came up on the nearside and the cyclist looked at me and carried on along the middle of the road so there was not enough width to pass. This happened three times more and I ended up staying behind him for about a mile and a half until he turned off at a roundabout.
I don't know if there is a law that a cyclist should make way for a faster road-user but it would have been courteous and common sense if he had moved into a passing space and waved me by.
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Another driver might not have waited, and just gone for the gap which could have resulted in a nasty coming together.
But that rider was nothing compared to the idiot in the city centre. It was raining so he was pedalling like fury, clearly wanting to get to his destination quickly.
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I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that is why he cycled up the inside of a line of slow-moving traffic, through red lights at pedestrian crossings three times, veered across the oncoming lane in front of a bus and up on a busy pavement and rode along for a while before dropping back on to the road again and cycling on.
I'll admit he made a lot of progress but I saw at least four vehicles brake hard to miss him... good job they did as he was not wearing a cycle helmet.
I suspect if he had driven a car through three sets of red lights, and mounted a pavement, someone would have given the registration number to the police.
If any cyclist truly believes this is acceptable riding behaviour I'd love to hear why. Tell me by emailing email@example.com