Letters: Cyclists obviously appreciate the exercise, but try not to anger motorists
Last week I nearly ran over a cyclist. It was just beginning to go dark and suddenly a bike appeared in front of me – the young cyclist had driven between parked cars and, although my headlights were on, he hadn’t seen me.
I braked, he swerved and then mounted the pavement and cycled on. He didn’t stop to apologise and probably didn’t realise how close he had come to a serious accident. He had dark clothes, no lights and wasn’t wearing a helmet. I felt really sick and was thankful that a car hadn’t been following me or I would have been run into. Please, you young and not-so-young cyclists who insist on wearing dark clothes just pause and think before you set out. Motorists get angry because sometimes, like me, an accident has just been avoided and they are relieved, but still cross because it hasn’t been their fault. A few light reflective strips on clothing is enough to warn a driver that there is someone ahead. The flashing lights on cycles and helmets are annoying, but at least you know someone is in front or behind you.
I know there is an ongoing dispute between cyclists and motorists and many of my family cycle both for recreation and work, but they know my opinion about wearing a helmet for protection, even when on a fun ride.
Motorists should all be wary of cyclists – and maybe try one if they don’t ride themselves and then just appreciate the obstacles cyclists have to deal with on a daily basis. Cyclists obviously appreciate the exercise they get and also avoiding traffic jams but please try not to anger motorists by ignoring traffic signals or riding on the pavement when it suits them. Believe me you all have my sympathy when riding/driving to and from work – I am retired and can avoid these situations. But I wish you would all sign a Peace Pact and vow to get on better on the roads!