I’m torn in half by what happened
It was dark; dusk comes early during these long months as we all know.
And I came somewhat of a cropper with a cyclist. We avoided each other, there were no physical fallout other than a shaken fist and a rude gesture.
Whose fault was it? I am firmly thinking, both of ours.
Here’s the thing; I too am a cyclist. And as a driver I give room, I give time and I give clear indication to cyclists.
But that give needs to go both ways. As a cyclist I do not careen along a cycle path and undertake unless the traffic is stopped.
I am torn in half by what happened. The cyclist came up the inside of me as I was pulling slowly over to the left. I was finding my way into a handy spot, not really sure of where I was, but quite sure when I began my indicate manoeuvre that there was no one inside of me.
So these things happen, cyclists move at speed and make the most of opportunities to get ahead of the traffic, and I get that, I get that perhaps I should have been more vigilant.
But, in the dark, perhaps the cyclist should consider quite how much of them and their machine is easily viewable.
And the answer is, very little.
We’ve all seen cyclists lit up like Xmas trees, bedecked in neon with lights on helmets, bikes, backs, bums and tucked into about every available orifice that they can find. And we’ve all laughed a bit, and sneered about the over-egging of the lit-up pedalling.
But actually, those are the people who will be having the last laugh as someone like that makes it easy to be seen. They make themselves visible and that makes them own their place on the road.
I have committed the sin of cycling home before with my iPhone stuffed in my shopping basket, caught out after dusk, using it as a torch. I now realise quite how stupid that was. One incident with a barely-lit cyclist has made me uber protective of me and my family.
Please make sure that you are safe, that you light up, that you take care when on bikes. And similarly when driving, make sure that you pay attention, know where cycle lanes are, and be aware for blind spots on the road. Let’s make ourselves visible to each other and give the respect and space that we all need. Following my own advice I hope that way to never be sat shaking again.