Peds, bikes, cars and a semi-trailer. The cyclists riding against the traffic in the middle lanes are insane, but at least they’ll only kill themselves. The cars on the other hand…
Danny Madskillz is the more accurate spelling.
Clover’s Cycleways have opened this week on Kent St in Sydney City, providing a separated two way cycle path for bicycle commuters. It provides a clear path for several blocks which were previously pretty hard to negotiate. Which is very nice, but at the moment also pretty lethal.
The biggest danger is the unattentive pedestrian. Because the cyleway is right next to the footpath, it’s pretty much treated as an extension, particularly in the morning crush. I guess understanding the boundary better will come with time.
Another problem (which I think will be harder to overcome) is the fact that peds are trained and almost hardwired to look toward the incoming vehicle traffic before crossing. Trouble is the cycleway is two way - but the peds are only looking one way before trotting out. Hence bikes riding counter to the lane flow are in all sorts of trouble.
On Kent St in particular, there are also a dozen car parks in three blocks which require cars to turn across the path, and so far I’ve hardly seen any cars checking for bikes before making their turn.
Couple that with poorly timed lights (I waited two entire rotations this morning before getting a little green bike) and it’s all a bit of a mess. It’s safer to stay out in the cars for the moment.
But fingers crossed things will improve with traning and time - and hopefully not too many collisions in the meantime.
ABC Radio National reports on the latest iteration of the mandatory helmet laws debate. Meanwhile in Amsterdam, 40% of all travel is done by bicycle, all sans helmet. I can see helmets might discourage some from riding, but I wouldn’t dream of going without on the daily commute. There must be a tipping point where helmetless riding becomes safe, but we’re nowhere near that here.
A unified theory of New York cycling. Replace all “New York” “Sydney”:
Bikes can and should behave much more like cars than pedestrians. They should ride on the road, not the sidewalk. They should stop at lights, and pedestrians should be able to trust them to do so. They should use lights at night. And - of course, duh - they should ride in the right direction on one-way streets. None of this is a question of being polite; it’s the law. But in stark contrast to motorists, nearly all of whom follow nearly all the rules, most cyclists seem to treat the rules of the road as strictly optional. They’re still in the human-powered mindset of pedestrians, who feel pretty much completely unconstrained by rules.
Cyclisk sculpture. Hopefully not made of the remnants of bikes smashed by cars.
Hopefully teaches you how to cope with Sydney shock jock road rage as a cyclist.
Finally, drivers act with more courtesy when they are being watched, eye contact is a powerful thing - a bit like a flashing light, increasing the probability that you’re not ignored.
Having watched the pro’s, a beautiful short film on a group of amateurs climbing the Tourmalet and three other Pyrenees peaks. Where do I sign up?