Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
PLodon
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Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby PLodon » 16 May 2020, 12:07pm

De Sisti wrote:
PLodon wrote:I've cycled most of my adult life, not as a club cyclist or with a road bike, I've just always had a bike and ridden it, in ordinary, everyday clothes to run errands or just go for rides for the sheer joy of it. I also run regularly, 3 or 4 times a week, never been a member of a club or anything, just to keep fit and again because I enjoy it.

I January of this year, as I was approaching 55 (and wanting to maintain my general fitness) after much consideration and research I decided to sell my car (my wife also has a car so not too much of a hardship) and cycle 2 miles to my local station, get a train (10 miles) and cycle 2 miles to the hospital where I work. I bought a folding bike from Decathlon, again after a lot of research, which I have been really happy with and the, pre-lockdown, journey ny train was fine.

The only problem with the whole experience was some motorists who not only often didn't give way at juctions or leave enough space when overtaking but the level of verbal abuse I sometimes recieved, just for being on a bike, on a road and in front of them. Last week I needed a repeat prescription from my doctors surgery, approximately 5 miles from where I live, my wife was at work so I thought nothing of cycling there.

Part of my route is along an urban road which for some reason has a speed limit of 60 mph, there is an 18 inch marked area near the kerb full of broken glass and debris, which I presume may be someones idea of a "bike lane" but certainly not fit to cycle in. The roads were very quiet and I happily cycled along until a care slowed, swerved towards me and two young man delivered a torrent of abuse because I should move over and get out of their way.

I'm really getting fed up of the abuse, threatening ,in some cases life threatening, behaviour that we are expected to endure when we ride a bike. It's become acceptable in the media and it seems that if you want to kill someone and get away with it just crash into them when they are riding a bike and simply say the sun was in your eyes. What is it with the UK that this sort of hatred towards other human beings who just happen to ride a bike is not only permissable but seems acceptable as a norm? I'm seriously thinking about buying another car. :(

Easier to read now.

EDIT : Thanks for that : Graham

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tykeboy2003
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby tykeboy2003 » 16 May 2020, 2:14pm

Excellent post, welcome to my world. Unfortunately to cycle in the UK you either have to accept the abuse and dangerous driving or restrict yourself to traffic free paths. Not easy when it's your commute.

Keep at though, it is worth it and you'll stay fit and healthy.

reohn2
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby reohn2 » 16 May 2020, 2:31pm

I get the same sort of treatment from some of the morons driving cars,9 times out of 10 I ride.
It can be sickening and frightening at times,these people's attitude stinks and with a completely depleted ineffective police force I can see no end of it in sight.
Nil desperandum carborundum illegitami :wink:
-----------------------------------------------------------
I cycle therefore I am.

atlas_shrugged
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby atlas_shrugged » 16 May 2020, 2:32pm

Complete sympathies with this. I cycled in Cranebridge for about 40 years and I can't remember one bit of abuse. I guess the drivers in the city have been tamed. Now I cycle 8 miles out into the centre and maybe 1 journey in 5 has what you have described. Mindless abuse.

But cheer us all up and tell me it was a BMW, Mercedes, Audi, or a Range Rover. Mine normally are.

PH
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby PH » 16 May 2020, 2:47pm

It's dreadful and frightening, report it to the police even though the expectation of anything happening is low, also complain to your local authority about the inadequacy of the cycle lane and the inappropriate speed limit. With cycling so much in the news, now might be a good time to be heard, well we can live in hope!
I've been doing a lot of urban riding (deliveries by bike for the last 18 months) maybe an average of 150 miles a week. Although it shouldn't happen at all, I haven't felt threatened very often, maybe twice in that period. There's been many other milder confrontations, but not every day, sometimes not every week. However appalling, we do sometimes need to remind ourselves that the vast majority of road users are not like that.

PLodon
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Location: S.E. Kent

Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby PLodon » 16 May 2020, 3:17pm

Thank you all for the understanding and support, awful to say I suppose as in an ideal world none of this sort of thing would happen, but it's good to know I'm not alone. :)

PDQ Mobile
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby PDQ Mobile » 16 May 2020, 4:39pm

I note the OP singles out the UK for this type of behaviour.
While clearly there are bad drivers and people with a bad attitude everywhere, my experience is that in mainland Western Europe more respect is given to cyclists
.
I have been frightened by fast close passing in France but it is the exception not the rule.
I have been shouted at too by young folk in a car, but I realized they were cheering me on!!

Personally I blame the Daily Mail and other nasty press for furthering such attitudes.
A perusal (if you can bring yourself to do it) nearly always results in finding some hapless minority being pilloried.

The question remains why other places are a lot better?

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TrevA
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby TrevA » 16 May 2020, 4:57pm

I tend not to cycle on urban roads anymore, so don’t get too much of this, but I still get the occasional incident. Yesterday, cycling with my wife along a not busy road, in single file, we get hooted and 2 fingers out the window, from some bloke in a brown van. I can’t see that we were doing anything wrong, and seemed to get the abuse just for being there. Luckily, such incidents are reasonably rare, for me anyway.
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Ron
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby Ron » 16 May 2020, 6:41pm

I often have to walk on roads with no associated pavement and find driver attitude towards pedestrians is no better than it is to cylists. :(

chris_suffolk
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby chris_suffolk » 16 May 2020, 7:48pm

PDQ Mobile wrote:I note the OP singles out the UK for this type of behaviour.
While clearly there are bad drivers and people with a bad attitude everywhere, my experience is that in mainland Western Europe more respect is given to cyclists
.
I have been frightened by fast close passing in France but it is the exception not the rule.
I have been shouted at too by young folk in a car, but I realized they were cheering me on!!

Personally I blame the Daily Mail and other nasty press for furthering such attitudes.
A perusal (if you can bring yourself to do it) nearly always results in finding some hapless minority being pilloried.

The question remains why other places are a lot better?


One possible reason why mainland Europe is 'better' is the law of presumed liability - where a car is deemed to be at fault in a collision with a bike unless they can prove otherwise. Makes drivers much more courteous and considerate in my experience. Little chance of us adopting it in the UK, especially with Brexit etc.

ossie
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby ossie » 16 May 2020, 7:52pm

PDQ Mobile wrote:I note the OP singles out the UK for this type of behaviour.
While clearly there are bad drivers and people with a bad attitude everywhere, my experience is that in mainland Western Europe more respect is given to cyclists
.
I have been frightened by fast close passing in France but it is the exception not the rule.
I have been shouted at too by young folk in a car, but I realized they were cheering me on!!

Personally I blame the Daily Mail and other nasty press for furthering such attitudes.
A perusal (if you can bring yourself to do it) nearly always results in finding some hapless minority being pilloried.

The question remains why other places are a lot better?


I had abuse in the Netherlands last September - from school kids. No real issues in France and although they give you room they often don't slow down. I've been rudely put in my place in Germany and the Netherlands by motorists as I was mistakenly' ignoring 'the rules' ..in other words get off the road and onto that cycle path over there and don't dare cycle the short distance down a cycle path that doesn't correspond with the road direction when there's a path on both sides.

When I think about I've probably had more abuse abroad but its not 'nasty abuse' at least I hope it isn't as I rarely know what they're saying. It just seem to be impatience.

I try to show a bit of respect to motorists, I wave , I nod I thank them for their patience. I think the issue is unlike France, Germany and the Netherlands we're having to share poor infrastructure with motorists and yes thanks to certain tabloids there's this massive almost hatred thing that can often show itself in a number of ways.

eileithyia
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby eileithyia » 16 May 2020, 8:08pm

Welcome to the delightful world of cycling in Britain today.....
Consider getting a camera to record incidents where they drive at you...
Stay calm, the majority of incidents the motorists are ignorant and oblivious of what they have actually done. It's not always deliberate.
Since lockdown we have had abuse hurled at us a few times...I think they hate us cos we can continue doing what we enjoy; cycling while their pubs maccy d's and footie is shutdown. Surprisingly though two lots of abuse came from fellow cyclists telling us we should only be cycling as a twosome, we are household of three cyclists.... I assume one of those cyclists who must have passed a family of three with a small daughter didn't hurl the same abuse at them...but because me son is 'adult' we seem to be fair game.
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells

Pete Owens
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby Pete Owens » 16 May 2020, 10:59pm

The only abuse I have had recently is from another cyclist who took issue with me riding bare headed.

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby The utility cyclist » 17 May 2020, 1:14am

PDQ Mobile wrote:I note the OP singles out the UK for this type of behaviour.
While clearly there are bad drivers and people with a bad attitude everywhere, my experience is that in mainland Western Europe more respect is given to cyclists
.
I have been frightened by fast close passing in France but it is the exception not the rule.
I have been shouted at too by young folk in a car, but I realized they were cheering me on!!

Personally I blame the Daily Mail and other nasty press for furthering such attitudes.
A perusal (if you can bring yourself to do it) nearly always results in finding some hapless minority being pilloried.

The question remains why other places are a lot better?


Had too many experiences of French, Dutch, Swiss drivers giving abuse and generally driving like @@@@@! General ignorance of cyclists rights, being honked at often because one wasn't on the 'infra' despite actually it not being suitable for whatever reason or my personal choice not to cycle on it. poor judgement at roundabouts/junctions, I've always felt that the day to day reality is a fair bit distant from what people imagine for countries on the continent.

When you look at the 200+ cyclist deaths in Netherlands which has progressively got worse over last few years despite all the extra infra investment and lowering cycle rates, I find that bewildering, how can that be the case when the actual exposure value to motor traffic to people on bikes is massively lower than in the UK? Yes they have more people on bikes/travel further per population head, but the exposure value to motor traffic is massively less than for people on bikes in the UK which whilst I don't have any direct numbers this surely must completely offset the mltiple distance travelled per population head and that's before you even take into account the 'safety in numbers' mantra, and yet the number of deaths is not far shy of double here.
Does that then mean the Dutch infra isn't all it's cracked up to be (we know one of the main areas where dutch cyclists are killed is at infra/motor road junctures), Dutch drivers are actually much worse than those in the UK or Dutch cyclists are worse than their UK counterparts regards safety?

I personally think we notice the true behaviour of motorists more wherever it is you live/ride every day, when we ride away from home I think we often plan not to go to congested areas, to parts where there's lots of traffic, and let's be honest, our roads are pretty bloody congested, even in my relatively small town of 35,000 or so the roads are rammed at peak times and busy all hours of the day, present period excepted.

I certainly think more of our network is more congested than most other Western countries, per driver mile the surprise is that we are one of the safer countries in Europe though as a person on a bike it does not feel like it. When I go to certain parts of the country there is a noticeable difference in the perceived threat. And whether the threat toward a person on a bike is real or imagined, it's the latter that is the be all and end all in terms of people cycling or not.

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mjr
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Re: Getting fed up with abuse etc from some motorists.

Postby mjr » 17 May 2020, 1:32am

Well done getting the usual half truths and spin against protected space into a topic about abuse from motorists. :roll:

PLodon, it ain't just you. As others have said, report it but don't expect much. It is possible that one day they'll have enough complaints when they catch them doing something undeniable that it'll pop up on the computer and mean the driver doesn't get off with a warning.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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