Until a few years ago back here, I was not in the ranks of the cyclists – very much a motorist. Therefore it’s possible to see both sides of the cycling question.
Seems to me there’s unreasonable behaviour on both sides. And there are also things which are necessary. The issue is that a cyclist really needs to move out early from the lights in order not to be squashed by van or car on a turn. It’s not reckless behaviour if done right.
If crossing the road at the lights, for example, I wait in position to see both sets of lights change. Once “their” lights are red and both directions have stopped, I’m off, with the red just changing to green and the car who would have turned right against my crossing a fraction after I’m already in the “new” road. Far from motorists seeing this as lawbreaking, they’re glad to have me out of the way early.
Plus one more thing – lots of eye contact, many thanks and waves, announcing oneself at the corner, so to speak. Think my age and lack of lycra help too. If the cyclist is ultra-courteous, as he’s the one who’ll come off second best, then it’s usually OK. Not always.
What motorists can’t stand is the arrogance, the footpath jumping, the attitude that the traffic can’t touch the rider. I’ve seen it quite a few times now and have wondered about these people. For a start, they’re a bit strange, they’ve probably never been motorists and don’t understand what’s involved with a car – stopping distances, visibility in all conditions etc.
They also hate cyclists sneaking up on the left between footpath and their car and as for touching their car!!! Hell, I get hot under the collar just watching them and I’m a cyclist. I’ve spoken to one or two of these and they’re really unpleasant people, with some sort of blockage which prevents them being sociable.
Shouldn’t think this but I wouldn’t cry if I pedalled past them and saw them wrapped around a light pole or whatever. I’d assist but would have zero sympathy.
Also, looking at that pic, there’s something annoying about cyclists, a bit like ants or spiders everywhere. As a motorist, my attitude would be – as long as they keep their distance from me, I shan’t accidentally squash them against a bollard. Terrible attitude but there’s just this je ne sais quoi, n’est-ce-pas?
S’pose it just comes down to courtesy, that’s all. More bike lanes would be nice but until then, only courtesy will save cyclists. And a pleasant attitude.