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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Re..Cycling . A Dangerous Sport for Land - Fill Operatives

Drivers have traditionally waged mental war with Cyclists and with good reason.
Since there is no legislation covering training of cyclists, inevitably the standard is very poor and that’s being charitable. Throughout our working day it is common to meet cyclists who are riding the wrong way down any street, on the wrong side of the road. Complete disregard for Traffic Lights and of course the probable action of other road users is common.
At night it is rare to see a Cyclist with any kind of lighting apparatus but thankfully it has become much rarer in recent years to encounter elderly men wobbling their way home from the Pub at all hours.
On average, in any given Month of daily driving in our locality we would encounter just one hand signal from a cyclist. Two in a month and we get excited.
The other day we came across an elderly cyclist who was in excellent control of his machine and who went to some lengths to signal his intention to turn right despite being weighed down with a pannier. The difference between Road users with experience and those who think they can run riot is remarkable. Young Cyclists who have no knowledge of the law, or who are happy to ignore it, will clearly become the next Generation of Incompetent Drivers with the results a foregone conclusion.
Probably young tearaways on cycles who are unlikely to ever be admonished by the Gardai will end up on powerful Motorbikes exhibiting similar skills!

One humorous not to finish with. A couple of years ago as we approached the rear gates of Limerick University we were cautiously keeping our distance from a cyclist who was carrying the equivalent of the contents of a Ten Ton Truck .As always in this particular location, we learn to expect that a Cyclist will almost certainly be turning right into the College, so we prepare in advance for this event by holding back and waiting for the inevitable.
The Student in question had a ruck sack on his back and stuff attached to the front and rear of the bike which was a feat in itself to manage any forward movement. As the head cocked to the right, a giveaway clue to the cyclist’s intentions, as he strained to hear any approaching traffic from behind, he obviously had to make a quick decision hearing the purr of our Turbo Diesel. So without further deliberation his Right Leg ejected out to its fullest extent and he swooped across the road to make his turn.
Here was a guy who knew he had to signal but who also realised that if he used his right arm he would have been spread eagled in the road with his lunch box and thesis crumpled by the approaching menace. A very good decision in the circumstances since the huge weight on the bike would have been unmanageable with one hand. This cyclist received our Innovation Award of the Year but obviously not a safe thing to be carrying such a load.

Astral Driving School Limerick.

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1 Comments:

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22 October, 2005 13:22  

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