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Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 10:13am
TonyR, perfectly put. I ride our local busy main road, and most direct route, regularly, without any problems. I'm amazed by the number of 'cyclists' who say that they would never do that and that they think I am mad to do so. They can't believe I do it in tee shirt and shorts, and no plastic hat! Yes it can feel threatening very occasionally, but, it's still a great ride. Just as a secondary point, being the main road in an area of low lying ground, it is on a ridge with amazing views. If I chose the circuitous, 'safer' route I would see nothing at all!!

Re: East West C2C Spanish Pyrenees Tour.

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 7 September 2014 - 9:55am
I finished my tour of the Pyrenees and cycled up through France and got a ferry from Dieppe to Newhaven. It was by far the most rewarding thing I have done in my life. I thought it might satiate my desire to cycle tour but I can't help but think of the next time I can cycle through a mountainous area and find myself daydreaming about it constantly.

A highlight was cycling between Ochagavia and St Jean Peid a Port which was gruelling but wonderful.

Here's some pics to help inspire anyone else to do something similar. DO IT!

IMG_1091.jpgIMG_1043.jpgIMG_1012.jpgIMG_0988.jpg

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 9:11am
BeeKeeper wrote:Sadly, this death sends it's own message. Stay off this road.

And the deaths of cyclists on minor roads and in towns? What message does that send? Stay off the roads altogether?

Sad as these incidents are, they are extremely rare. There are many other things we do in daily life that are far more likely to kill you. The danger is we start to engender (and probably already have) a Fear of Roads for what is an extremely safe activity. The real issues with riding on these sorts of roads is how threatening they can feel, not how threatening they are.

Re: Solo night ride

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 9:05am
fluffybunnyuk wrote:Great tale. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!!!
Wow thats an...interesting route I need to get off my lazy backside, and catch some of that end of summer crisp night air before it turns too cold.

Usually i come over the ridge at Oxted, down tandridge lane to Lingfield, down newchapel road to turners hill.
Down the Ardingley Road to Haywards Heath. Down to Wivelsfield, common lane, and that classic the ditchfield beacon
Usually I stop here for a snack. Thats my excuse anyway!!! Then on to Brighton beach. All back roads. I dream of cycling down the A23 but I dont trust the traffic.
EDIT: and then back again because I dont like paying for train travel...
I know all of that route from Lingfield southwards. It's a bit misleading that you say 'down' everywhere, there's a lot of 'up' on that route besides the celebrated Beacon (note: 'Ditchling', not 'Ditchfield') .

I should warn people that, despite being 'back' roads, those roads are not quiet at daytime peak hours, they're very busy with traffic. But at night time they're a dream. I came that way a couple of times with Simon Legg's Friday Night group, back in the early days*. We by-passed Haywards Heath by turning left in Lindfield (not Lingfield) and along Slugwash Lane, re-joining the B2112 at Wivelsfield.

*Before I was banned, that is

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 8:53am
BeeKeeper wrote:.............. Sadly, this death sends it's own message. Stay off this road.

And that we live in a society that doesn't give a toss for 'lower class' road users,as it doesn't provide viable alternatives for them.Whilst at the same time giving lip service to 'promoting' cycling and a healthy lifestyle.

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 8:18am
Very sad to hear about his death. He was a local man so would have known about the alternative route and how inefficient it is compared to the direct route he was on.
I think I can understand the CTCs dillema in that to actively advise cyclists to avoid roads like this would smack of throwing in the towel in their campaign for better provision for cyclists. Sadly, this death sends it's own message. Stay off this road.

Re: Sheep playing chicken

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 7:20am
tatanab wrote:Horses are different. I used to live in the New Forest and I am pretty sure that the ponies look out for you. You can almost imagine the leader saying "ok lads, here's one. Wait until you see the whites of his eyes. Wait- wait. NOW step out".

Don't they just!!!

Re: Sheep playing chicken

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 7:19am
thirdcrank wrote:I've always assumed that sheep can see that cyclists are people ie instinctively treated as a threat, especially when close by, but that they see and interpret motor traffic differently.

How they react is related to the speed of the thing they are reacting to. Nature has programmed them to react only to things moving at the speeds that predators go and motor traffic tends to go a lot faster than that so typically gets ignored. Slow down in your car and they will react. Go fast enough on your bike and they'll ignore you.

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 7:08am
DevonDamo wrote:Okay - I got that one wrong! But I had my reasons though: If I were a head honcho in the women's institute, I wouldn't dream of encouraging women to walk alone at night. Similarly, if I were influential in the cycling world, I'd never in a million years suggest it's a good idea to go out on dual carriageways.

But that wasn't the question. The question was should the CTC actively discourage it. I suggest that if the WI were to actively discourage women from going out at night all hell would break out.


Although it may offend our sense of rights and equality, some activities are just dangerous, and probably always will be. It may be morally correct to aim our ire at the miscreants who attack women or micro-sleep their lorries over innocent cyclists, but that doesn't help the deceased or their loved ones. If it's that dangerous, swallow your sense of injustice and just don't do it.

There are places, like this bit of the A38 and a dual carriageway near me, which are unavoidable - there are no realistic alternative route. In my case the roads are staggered by at least half a mile where they cross so you either ride only on one side and don't cross it or you have to ride along it to cross it or you have to do a 10 mile detour to the nearest unstaggered crossing.

Remember that about five motorists a day are killed on our roads and another 60 a day seriously injured. Should the AA and RAC actively discourage motorists from using the roads or should we seek to reduce the sorts of driving and road designs that make it dangerous?

Campaigning for good, segregated cycle paths is a sensible line to take. Campaigning against poor driving in order to make fast roads safe for cyclists is straying into King Canute territory.

It would be easy enough to put a speed limit on those sections of dual carriageway that are unavoidable for cyclists, horse riders, moped riders etc and to put up big be aware of cyclists signs, especially if its a well used road for End to Enders. And that would save not only cyclist lives but also far more lives of motor vehicle occupants.

Re: Biker's death filmed - horrific.

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 7:04am
661-Pete wrote:What I'm wondering is, how soon before a similar incident involving a cyclist gets recorded. Not my death, nor was it filmed, but I had a bad crash and my Garmin recorded it complete with my HR going through the roof.

Re: Police Thugs

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 4:48am
I would like to thank everyone for their comments, its been most uplifting when dealing with this. The support, advice from Jenny Jones, Roger Geffin, and others has been invaluable.

Re: Sheep playing chicken

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 4:23am
The secret to remember is that running in straight lines is a great defense mechanism for getting away, provided your a sheep running from a predator.
So if the sheeps running down the road, slow down, and let it think your tired. Then it'll dodge off to the left or right. Understanding any kind of behaviour is always useful

Re: Solo night ride

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 3:42am
Great tale. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!!!
Wow thats an...interesting route I need to get off my lazy backside, and catch some of that end of summer crisp night air before it turns too cold.

Usually i come over the ridge at Oxted, down tandridge lane to Lingfield, down newchapel road to turners hill.
Down the Ardingley Road to Haywards Heath. Down to Wivelsfield, common lane, and that classic the ditchfield beacon
Usually I stop here for a snack. Thats my excuse anyway!!! Then on to Brighton beach. All back roads. I dream of cycling down the A23 but I dont trust the traffic.
EDIT: and then back again because I dont like paying for train travel...

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 3:16am
I think there's a big difference between encouraging something and refusing to actively discourage it. This is a common misunderstanding when debating cycle safety. People come along wishing to dictate what others' behaviour should be and think that anybody who doesn't agree with their stance is trying to dictate the opposite. In reality many people just do not wish to be dictated to. Rest assured, nobody wants helmets or Hi-vis banned and nobody wants to compel cyclists to ride down the A38.

Cyclists aren't blind to the dangers that surround them and I am more inclined to trust the judgement of the individual regarding his own safety than any general assumption based upon road type and speed limits. Even on one stretch of road the conditions can vary significantly at different times of the day. I avoid most of these like the plague during the day but the couple I used were perfectly fine when I was working nights.

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 2:41am
Okay - I got that one wrong! But I had my reasons though: If I were a head honcho in the women's institute, I wouldn't dream of encouraging women to walk alone at night. Similarly, if I were influential in the cycling world, I'd never in a million years suggest it's a good idea to go out on dual carriageways. In both cases, such advice would be likely to result in harm.

Although it may offend our sense of rights and equality, some activities are just dangerous, and probably always will be. It may be morally correct to aim our ire at the miscreants who attack women or micro-sleep their lorries over innocent cyclists, but that doesn't help the deceased or their loved ones. If it's that dangerous, swallow your sense of injustice and just don't do it.

Campaigning for good, segregated cycle paths is a sensible line to take. Campaigning against poor driving in order to make fast roads safe for cyclists is straying into King Canute territory.

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 7 September 2014 - 1:53am
Tragically another man was killed this morning in another accident on the A38
http://www.torquayheraldexpress.co.uk/S ... story.html

But this accident is not reported on the BBC Devon news web site. Car (or landrover? not clear from the report) drivers dying after hitting a stationary vehicle are less newsworthy.

The problem with the A38 is that it should be the M5. However, to be upgraded would require alternative routes for local traffic and traffic that cannot use motorways. It is not only cyclists that are prohibited. Tractors, learner drivers are also not allowed.

In 2009 there was a fatal accident when someone fell asleep and drove into the back of a tractor and trailer. The (car) driver survived but her half brother and her partner were killed. http://www.westernmorningnews.co.uk/Cra ... story.html

Ban cycling on dual carriageways? Should also ban tractors. And underpowered cars pulling caravans. Or anything that cannot break the speed limit.

If cycling is banned on dual carriageways, it won't be long before someone notices that most serious cycle accidents happen on ordinary roads. So, logically, cyclists should be banned from these as well 'for their own safety'.

Would a ban apply to all dual carriageways, or just some? Or only when there is an alternative route or cycle path available? A blanket ban would mean that in a town like Basingstoke, cycling would be illegal - you would have a choice of cycling illegally on pavements or illegally on dual carriageways.

I suspect that most of us don't use DCs when there is a viable alternative - I don't like being past at high speed. However, not all DCs are the same, and we all have different ideas of when to use one or take an alternative route. I make different decisions depending on the circumstances.

Re: My first tour (I didn't make it)

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 7 September 2014 - 1:52am
Sounds like a successful trip - over the mountain and the best-tasting coffee ever!

You'll no doubt be intrigued to try the route again but with some packing ammendments, maybe one bottle of diluting juice rather than all the lucozade.

I agree with others, the pushing on foot will have given your legs an extra battering. You could do worse than taking stairs rather than escalators in everyday life, in training for your next lucozade-vs-mountain challenge!

Re: Biker's death filmed - horrific.

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 September 2014 - 11:38pm
Given the comments, I wonder what would have happened had the case gone to trial.

Re: Another A38 Accident

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 September 2014 - 11:16pm
Bicycler wrote:Actually I think he's making the exact opposite point!

Correct. Deal with the perpetrators and the road designs, not by penalising the potential victims.
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