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to think some cyclists appear to have a death wish

(145 Posts)
whoneedssleepanyway Thu 18-Oct-12 10:23:13

last night it was dark and rainy I was turning right into a residential street with cars parked both sides so only room for one car and as I am turning suddenly a cyclist comes into view coming out from behind parked cars, no lights and wearing a dark jacket...I nearly knocked him off.

If I had would it have been my fault, I am guessing it would have...? But I can't understand why someone would cycle in the dark and rain without the proper equipment (lights and visible clothing...)

Housewifefromheaven Thu 18-Oct-12 10:27:10

Cyclists are the bane of my life.

Rule breaking, entitled, evil, no lights, no manners

They don't even have insurance!

I had a row with one this morning grin

TiAAAAARGHo Thu 18-Oct-12 10:28:19

You would not necessarily have been considered at fault if you'd hit him ( and even if you were at fault, he would have been found contributorily negligent if he tried to sue). I've been thinking about this recently as I nearly hit an idiot with no lights/reflectors who was wearing drk clothes too. He also had no helmet.

I think maybe he did have a death wish. Fortunately I was only doing about 5 miles an hour at the time.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Thu 18-Oct-12 10:31:09

On the other hand, as I and some other cyclists were riding in broad daylight yesterday afternoon, a car turned out onto the road to push into the traffic moving slowly, couldn't get in and totally blocked the road by being bang up to the kerb and making everyone break in a hurry. None of us were 'rule breaking, entitled, evil, no lights no manners'. One man did say 'nice driving!' and made a 'WTF?' gesture though.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Thu 18-Oct-12 10:31:12

I agree, some do appear to have a death wish. I regularly see a cyclist round here who cycles down a national speed limit road, in the dark without lights, helmet or a visi-vest. The road is fast but not very wide. If you get two lorries going in opposite directions there is little room for anything else so to leave yourself vulnerable like this cyclist does is stupidity in the extreme. There is an element of the cycling fraternity that should begin to realise they have to take some responsibility for their own safety on the roads. There are many, many good cyclists who are involved in accidents that are not their fault and that are caused by the impatience or lack of vision of some motorists but there are also some cyclists who think that because they can see you you must be able to see them.

Nancy66 Thu 18-Oct-12 10:31:23

I see cyclists in London all the time at night with no lights on their bikes.

I daresay their death wish will be granted one day.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Thu 18-Oct-12 10:33:32

So the evil entitled rule-breaking cars which speed down my road using it as a rat run presumably don't have a death wish but a murder wish?

DialMforMummy Thu 18-Oct-12 10:33:39

What Housewifefromheaven said. There are a pain on the road and bloody dangerous on the pavement. Entitled on both surfaces.
Hate them hate them hate them.... I know IABU.

ViviPru Thu 18-Oct-12 10:33:51


Regarding who would be at fault, every RTA is assessed to have a % blame apportioned to every individual present. So in this case, if you'd hit him, you would have a % blame, as would he, and so might anyone else present - so for example any passenger you might have etc. In this instance, his % blame would increase due to his lack of effort to make himself visible. If you were travelling at a speed considered appropriate for the conditions and manoeuvre you were making, then your % would be low.

<Spent too much time on driver awareness courses>

somebloke123 Thu 18-Oct-12 10:34:42

I totally agree and sympathise.

I'm a (commuting) cyclist myself and it really pisses me off that a minority give the rest of us a bad name. Riding without lights in dark clothing, going through red lights which it doesn't occur to them apply to cyclists too, cycling on pavements and generally aggressive behaviour.

Admittedly one does to some extent need to be assertive and be a bit flexible for self-preservation but there's no excuse for the behaviour you have described.

There have been moves (as in Holland I think) to modify the law so that the cyclist is assumed to be the innocent party in any incident unless proven otherwise. I think this would be a bad move.

BlueyDragon Thu 18-Oct-12 10:36:01

Housewifefromheaven, not all cyclists are like that. I cycle a lot in London and yes I do see the utterly idiotic behaviours you describe, but I also see plenty of sensible cyclists too.

I also see a lot of car drivers who also display those utterly idiotic behaviours. Particularly there is no need to use your mobile phone whilst driving and there's certainly no need to text. Pretty much every near miss I've had as a cyclist and a motorcyclist has been because some idiot in a car is trying to drive and operate a mobile at the same time. Hands free is ok. You're driving a large piece of metal that can cause great harm, pay attention to what you're doing with it. I also drive a car and I manage to wait to make calls, but I'm not a slave to my phone.

So YANBU, OP, because some cyclists are idiots. The one you saw definitely has a death wish. I'm not sure, but I think he/she would have been expected to bear some responsibility as not complying with the Highway Code.

Nancy66 Thu 18-Oct-12 10:37:22

somebloke - it's the majority, not minority.

kekouan Thu 18-Oct-12 10:38:21

This will turn into a car hating thread/cyclists can do no wrong/etc.

I get v worried driving in town - the bad cyclists drop off curbs in front of you with no warning and I'm really worried that one of them will just pull out in front of me one day and I won't have time to stop! One shot across a junction in front of me yesterday - luckily I was far back enough that I could just stop in time.

I'm a considerate driver. I give cyclists room, I don't speed past them, I do everything I can to be as safe as possible on the road and do not appreciate it when a bloody bike flies through the red lights and causes me to slam on the brakes to avoid them. I swear, some of them really do have a death wish!
(that's Oxford for you though!)

whoneedssleepanyway Thu 18-Oct-12 10:38:33

TheOriginalSteamingNit - I totally agree with you that there are absolute awful drivers out there too, on my road which is supposed to be 20 mile limit and has speed bumps you get people literally bombing down, one time I was crossing with my children and someone actually sped up when they saw us from a distance.

SomeBloke - yes not all cyclists are like this but like you say it is the stupid ones that give you a bad name.

I always give way to cyclists and if one is ahead of me and I can't overtake safely I slow down behind them till I can.

ViviPru that is interesting about the % thing never knew that.

ViviPru Thu 18-Oct-12 10:41:09

Yes, that's the one thing I remember from the course, even your passenger or a passer by can have a % blame apportioned, most likely to be 0%, but in some cases it can increase due to them distracting the driver/touching controls in the car I never hit the +button on the cruise control when DP is meandering along too slowly, oh no

TheOriginalSteamingNit Thu 18-Oct-12 10:42:21

I'm a driver too, as are lots of cyclists of course. Indeed, although yesterday I got forced off the road by Idiot Sainsbury's Woman, I was also infuriated on the open road by two cyclists riding side by side so I had to crawl behind them. And had I beeped the horn or flashed my lights, I guess I would have been a Fucking Audi Driver!

Sometimes cyclists cycle in annoying ways. I just don't get the 'they are EVIL' crap.

Housewifefromheaven Thu 18-Oct-12 10:42:37

bluey I know of course not every cyclist is a pain.

In fact, those little ones on the pavements with stabilisers are actually quite nice grin

ViviPru Thu 18-Oct-12 10:43:53

All road cyclists need to get themselves a proper bike and throw themselves down a couple of mountains <MTB Evangelist>

edam Thu 18-Oct-12 10:44:06

A while back I was in a cab stuck in gridlocked traffic near King's Cross. Loads of cyclists weaving in and out between buses, lorries, cars and vans. I really felt for the cabbie, evem though we were stationery for long periods, whenever the traffic moved a few feet it would have been really easy to inadvertently kill one of them. My Mum nearly missed her train (she can't walk very far so we couldn't jump out of the cab and walk to the station). Next day discovered the jam was caused by the ruddy cyclists protesting about cyclist killed by a lorry turning left! FFS, how stupid to protest about someone being killed by trying to get yourself killed...

SamuelWestsMistress Thu 18-Oct-12 10:45:33

I was driving along the other day when an old man on a bike cycled across the road and started cycling up the road towards me for about 20 metres (trying to get to the sloped kerb bit for wheels) this was all on the approach to a busy round about.

I slowed right down and stared at him in disbelief thinking WTF? He shook his fist at me angrily, like I'd done something wrong. Stupid old twit.

I don't know why he didn't just get off his bike and cross at the crossing!

SydneyB Thu 18-Oct-12 10:51:47

Gah, this drives me mad. No-one ever posts to say that 'drivers appear to have a deathwish' or 'pedestrians have a deathwish'. Some people do stupid things but it seems that cyclists always have to prove they don't whereas it is assumed that most drivers and pedestrians behave well. Stop lumping us all together like this. I am a cyclist, a pedestrian, a driver and I think I do these things safely. Until the general attitude towards cyclists as entitled road users changes, and real thought is given to the transport structure on our roads, nothing is going to change. I am SHOUTING NOW.

kekouan Thu 18-Oct-12 11:02:10

There are lots of threads about crappy driving/tailgating etc.

I just see so many bad cyclists on my route to work that it's hard not to lump them together. I'm always a bit shocked tbh when I see a cyclist actually look behind them and stick their arm out to signal, rather than just swerving in front of me like so many of them do. For the first time on my commute I actually saw a cyclist use the correct lane at a junction, rather than the left only turn, to go straight on. I was shock

People get rage at bad cyclists because when they do stupid things there's a risk they will go under the wheels of a car! Nobody wants to knock someone off their bike.. I just wish more of them would look when they cross/drop off a kerb, etc.

My commute through Oxford is like a bloody obstacle course!

kekouan Thu 18-Oct-12 11:06:32

Actually, I was driving in Oxford with a friend from Leeds the other day. She's a cyclist and doesn't drive. She evangelises about cycling and bloody loves it. Hates the idiots who run red lights like any normal person. She's actually been knocked off her bike recently by someone coming out of a junction without looking, so is very anti-car at the moment.

She doesn't drive though. She was amazed at the number of bikes in a 10 mile journey that caused me to brake suddenly or take some other evasive manouvre in order to not hit them! It was a particularly bad run that day, but she really did appreciate how difficult it can be to pre-empt the idiots and what they will do (same goes for pedestrians and other cars tbh)

SkippyYourFriendEverTrue Thu 18-Oct-12 11:07:06

I was riding down the road yesterday and a van came the other way. It was a one-way street.

I just glared at him.

Some cyclists ride poorly, but my experience is that many drivers driver in ways likely to KILL, they overtake on narrow roads much too close, they drive, way way in excess of the speed limit, basically just behaving like a car is a fairground dodgem, rather than a lethal weapon.

The amount of dangerous and illegal driving is so far in excess of the amount of negligent cycling that it's not even funny. And nobody does anything about it.

At our local police forum the nimbies were complaining about people riding on the pavement. Except it wasn't on the pavement it was on a road, a semi-pedestrianised one that cyclists are permitted to use.

Did they make any complaint about the majority of cars exceeding the 30mph speed limit and making it dangerous for children to walk and cycle home? Did they fuck.

SamuelWestsMistress Thu 18-Oct-12 11:09:17

I think the issue isn't really with the cyclists who use the road properly like other vehicles but the ones who try to be a paderstian/bike hybrid. Use the road properly or bloody well walk, don't cycle on pavements where convenient, ride through red lights and weave in and out of stationary traffic. Oh AND WEAR A FUCKING HELMET! Because when an innocent person hits you due to your own stupidity they don't have to live with your death on their conscience for the rest of their lives.

Why helmets aren't a legal requirement I don't bloody know.

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