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  • FIRST POST
    • Stoke
    • By Stoke 2nd Oct 17, 6:07 PM
    • 1,998Posts
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    Stoke
    Why would anyone cycle to work?
    • #1
    • 2nd Oct 17, 6:07 PM
    Why would anyone cycle to work? 2nd Oct 17 at 6:07 PM
    This morning, on the way into work, I saw a cyclist nearly get knocked off by two different cars in the space of 20 seconds.

    Then, half an hour later, I saw another cyclist nearly get knocked off, again we're talking inches.

    It's an absolute bloody minefield out there with all the crap drivers. It's a shame as cyclists do other road users and the world a favour in reality, but they aren't half treated with contempt.

    I've always considered cycling to work, but nah, it's too risky tbh.
    Last edited by Stoke; 02-10-2017 at 6:12 PM.
Page 3
    • parking_question_chap
    • By parking_question_chap 7th Oct 17, 6:22 PM
    • 1,413 Posts
    • 1,236 Thanks
    parking_question_chap

    I've always considered cycling to work, but nah, it's too risky tbh.
    Originally posted by Stoke
    It depends where you live, and what other options you have.

    I cycle out of choice.

    Only a few miles, cheaper and faster than taking the car.
    • gonedownthepub
    • By gonedownthepub 8th Oct 17, 9:25 AM
    • 77 Posts
    • 32 Thanks
    gonedownthepub
    Love cycling to work
    Few tips from someone who has been cycling to work since 1980 and selected jobs in the past on whether they are within a safe cycling distance.
    Always use the cycle path.
    Ride defensively.
    Don't rush.
    Enjoy the fresh air.
    • brat
    • By brat 8th Oct 17, 4:57 PM
    • 2,446 Posts
    • 3,103 Thanks
    brat
    Few tips from someone who has been cycling to work since 1980 and selected jobs in the past on whether they are within a safe cycling distance.
    Always use the cycle path.
    Ride defensively.
    Don't rush.
    Enjoy the fresh air.
    Originally posted by gonedownthepub
    Alternatively, if you want to be assertive yet safe,
    Only use the cycle path if it benefits you
    Ride assertively
    Don't slouch
    Enjoy the fresh air.
    Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.
    • scd3scd4
    • By scd3scd4 9th Oct 17, 11:13 AM
    • 542 Posts
    • 431 Thanks
    scd3scd4
    Are we really comparing walking with falling off a bike at 15 mph???
    • custardy
    • By custardy 9th Oct 17, 12:49 PM
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    custardy
    People cycle to work for a few, limited, reasons:

    - Alpha males.
    - People whose route is pleasant/enjoyable and they might have safe bike parking spaces and work and some, I believe, even have showers!
    - People who are just going 1-2 miles and have very good outer clothing available to them ... and the route's nice

    For all others it's an arduous and torturous concept, where they're battling with filth, the weather, other traffic, huge/dodgy junctions and mayhem.

    I used to cycle 6 miles to work when I started work nearly 40 years ago - it was quite a pleasant "amble" of a ride, with safe roads and no nutter drivers to contend with. All I had to contend with was getting wet when it rained, cold when it snowed... and I was in a job where it was acceptable to turn up looking like a drowned rat and sitting at my desk shivering or damp for 2 hours upon arrival.

    I did get a moped within 8 months though
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    Alpha male
    • lisyloo
    • By lisyloo 9th Oct 17, 1:07 PM
    • 21,318 Posts
    • 10,242 Thanks
    lisyloo
    I've always considered cycling to work, but nah, it's too risky tbh.
    Originally posted by Stoke
    In central London it is the fastest way to travel.
    My route is 80% cycle superhighway which means NO motor traffic.
    The rest is back route or very slowly highly controlled (traffic lights).

    So depends entirely on where you live and what the route and alternatives are like. I agree it's very poor in some areas but in London we have superior routes which are physically seperated from traffic (not just a painted line).
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 1:52 PM
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    jack_pott
    I find it hard to believe people drive more recklessly around cyclists with helmets, that just seems mad.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    So people don't behave more carefully when they perceive more risk then?

    drivers give you more room when you have a child on the back
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    ...or perhaps they do.
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 1:56 PM
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    jack_pott
    Whilst I agree that in quite a lot of accidents a helmet may not prevent significant injury, in the small amount that they do they are invaluable.
    Originally posted by RichardD1970
    So how did you establish that the people whose lives are saved by wearing a helmet outnumber those who die because they are wearing a helmet?
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 2:04 PM
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    jack_pott
    you're relatively unlikely to have a serious fall onto your head while walking. On a bike you're MUCH more likely to fall on your head and at a speed which can cause serious damage.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    This is irrelevant. The number of pedestrians dying on the roads is three times the number of cyclist deaths, so if the objective is to save as many lives as possible, there are more to be saved by making pedestrians wear helmets (and even more still by making motorists wear them).
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 9th Oct 17, 2:13 PM
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    andrewf75
    This is irrelevant. The number of pedestrians dying on the roads is three times the number of cyclist deaths, so if the objective is to save as many lives as possible, there are more to be saved by making pedestrians wear helmets (and even more still by making motorists wear them).
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    I don't follow that logic. There are many more than 3 times as many pedestrians as cyclists. You're more likely to fall on your head cycling than walking so more risk. The objective is purely a personal one based on your personal risk, overall numbers are irrelevant.
    Last edited by andrewf75; 09-10-2017 at 2:16 PM.
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 9th Oct 17, 2:15 PM
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    andrewf75
    So people don't behave more carefully when they perceive more risk then?

    ...or perhaps they do.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    seeing a child and thinking you'll give extra space is understandable. I can imagine that thought process.
    seeing a cyclist and then making a judgment how close to pass by him on the basis of whether he is wearing a helmet I can't!
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 2:24 PM
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    jack_pott
    I don't follow that logic. There are many more than 3 times as many pedestrians as cyclists. You're more likely to fall on your head cycling than walking so more risk.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    The objective of wearing helmets purports to be saving lives, therefore it's the number of deaths we're counting, not the number of pedestrians.

    Last time I checked there were about 100 cyclist deaths and 300 pedestrian deaths PA, so if you make pedestrians wear helmets there are three times as many lives to save. The reason this is never suggested is prejudice of course, everyone is a pedestrian but only a minority are cyclists. A minority that are seen as eccentric, stupid for indulging in such a dangerous activity, lower socioeconomic class, and a nuisance to other road users.
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 9th Oct 17, 2:34 PM
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    andrewf75
    The objective of wearing helmets purports to be saving lives, therefore it's the number of deaths we're counting, not the number of pedestrians.

    Last time I checked there were about 100 cyclist deaths and 300 pedestrian deaths PA, so if you make pedestrians wear helmets there are three times as many lives to save. The reason this is never suggested is prejudice of course, everyone is a pedestrian but only a minority are cyclists. A minority that are seen as eccentric, stupid for indulging in such a dangerous activity, lower socioeconomic class, and a nuisance to other road users.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    but you're looking at it from some kind of overview, disregarding personal risk levels. From a government objective I think I see where you're coming from. From a personal perspective, I wouldn't dream of wearing a helmet as a pedestrian and I wouldn't dream of cycling without one.

    also I'd say cyclists are mostly higher socioeconomic class - its a very middle class thing in the UK unlike elsewhere
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 2:36 PM
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    jack_pott
    seeing a child and thinking you'll give extra space is understandable. I can imagine that thought process.
    seeing a cyclist and then making a judgment how close to pass by him on the basis of whether he is wearing a helmet I can't!
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    You are making the mistake of thinking that everything you do is the result of a conscious decision. (This and this should disabuse you of that idea.) Dr Ian Walker at Bath showed that motorists leave more room for cyclists without helmets. It's the same story with seatbelts, Wiel Janssen at the Dutch Institute for Road Safety Research showed 25 years ago that people drive faster when they're wearing a seatbelt. But then driving faster has no effect whatsoever on the risk of having an accident, does it.
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • bertikusmaximus
    • By bertikusmaximus 9th Oct 17, 2:41 PM
    • 12 Posts
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    bertikusmaximus
    I live in Gloucester, work in Bristol, so I cycle to Gloucester train station, get the train and then cycle from Temple Meads to my office, near the Hippodrome. Reasons I cycle as follows:

    1. Road layout at Gloucester station is awful and getting home in the evening is rage inducing, because people drive so poorly and create jams by being selfish.
    2. Car parking charges are £3.80 a pay (although APCOA don't make it obvious there's a discount code, so for less savvy commuters they probably pay £8+), which adds up to a far amount each month.
    3. Cycle lanes in Bristol are actually pretty decent and my route is flat. So a 20 minute walk becomes an easy 7 minute cycle.

    It is a bit of a problem getting my bike on the train because GWR frequently run services with only 2 carriages. Not much of an issue in the morning, as nobody is getting on at Gloucester; but the evening trip home can be a fight to get on, past the hordes of people.

    I haven't had many close calls yet, but I do think more can be done. The cycle lanes in Gloucester are awful compared to the dutch style ones Bristol have begun to install. I also think more needs to be done to eradicate road rage aimed at cyclists. Yes, there are some cyclists out there - normally teenagers, but I have seen hardened commuters - acting like idiots and disregarding the rules of the road. But the same is true of drivers. Generally, people are too focused on themselves and consequently use the roads dangerously because they're worried about being a minute late.
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 2:43 PM
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    jack_pott
    but you're looking at it from some kind of overview, disregarding personal risk levels.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    It's the overview that tells you your personal risk level. You can't know the risk from your own personal experience, because you don't personally have enough accidents to calculate the stats from.

    also I'd say cyclists are mostly higher socioeconomic class - its a very middle class thing in the UK unlike elsewhere
    I think cycles are seen as transport for those who can't afford a car. As Thatcher said "anyone who's still using public transport when they're thirty is a failure". Bikes come in the same category.
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 9th Oct 17, 2:46 PM
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    andrewf75
    You are making the mistake of thinking that everything you do is the result of a conscious decision. (This and this should disabuse you of that idea.) Dr Ian Walker at Bath showed that motorists leave more room for cyclists without helmets. It's the same story with seatbelts, Wiel Janssen at the Dutch Institute for Road Safety Research showed 25 years ago that people drive faster when they're wearing a seatbelt. But then driving faster has no effect whatsoever on the risk of having an accident, does it.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    I'm aware of this study and I'm sceptical of the findings, but even if true its not even about drivers going close to you. The people I know who have fallen onto their head have done so because their bike failed or they hit a pothole or other obstruction and gone over the handlebars. No-one pretends a helmet makes you invincible, it just offers protection from certain (common) falls.
    • bertikusmaximus
    • By bertikusmaximus 9th Oct 17, 2:47 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    bertikusmaximus
    You are making the mistake of thinking that everything you do is the result of a conscious decision. (This and this should disabuse you of that idea.) Dr Ian Walker at Bath showed that motorists leave more room for cyclists without helmets. It's the same story with seatbelts, Wiel Janssen at the Dutch Institute for Road Safety Research showed 25 years ago that people drive faster when they're wearing a seatbelt. But then driving faster has no effect whatsoever on the risk of having an accident, does it.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    Aren't safety features - cycling helmets, seat beats etc. - there to prevent serious injury in the event of an accident, not to prevent the accident in the first place? It might be true that cars give cyclists more room if they're wearing a helmet; it might also be true that people drive slower if they don't have a seat belt on. But if an accident does happen, both will reduce the risk of injury.

    Case in point for cycle helmets? See Dan Martin's crash at this year's Tour de France. There is no way he wouldn't have been seriously injured if he weren't wearing a helmet.
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 9th Oct 17, 2:49 PM
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    andrewf75
    I think cycles are seen as transport for those who can't afford a car. As Thatcher said "anyone who's still using public transport when they're thirty is a failure". Bikes come in the same category.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    it might be perceived that way by lower socio economic classes, but in reality cyclists are generally higher socioeconomic groups in the UK - as I'm sure you acknowedge
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 17, 2:51 PM
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    jack_pott
    No-one pretends a helmet makes you invincible, it just offers protection from certain (common) falls.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    No, they pretend that helmets reduce the number of deaths from head injuries without producing the evidence to support their claim.
    I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.
    Friedrich Nietzsche
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