Where are cyclists meant to ride?

“Dear Angry Bearded Man,

My deepest apology for nearly running into your wife. I’m not sure what I’m meant to say sorry for as your words were largely profanities but I think I picked up you aren’t a fan of people on bikes but here is my apology anyway.

I am sorry she stepped off the kerb onto the cycle lane on the road about 50cm short of me riding. I am sorry I clearly misunderstood what a cycle lane is for.

From another f%&King D%$khead W$%nker cyclist.”

I just got in from a ride, during the ride I had my first proper altercation on a bike, but it’s left me rather confused and wondering something.

Where do people want cyclists to ride? After the above incident.. It’s apparently not the bike lanes.

The options are:

  1. Footpath – Illegal in my state for people over 12 years old. Yes, over 12 years old it is illegal to ride on a footpath.
  2. Road – The legal option, I stop at stop signs, I stop at crossings and redlights. I try to take up as little room as possible while I keep myself safe. This is the option usually less favored by your average road user.
  3. Bike lanes – Every internet comments section on this topic is full of people like my angry bearded friend saying “pay registration or get off our roads and onto cycle ways”. Apparently this isn’t the right place either?

Today after the gym I went for a ride, I was riding along in the bike lane. As I was about to pass a couple crossing the road, my angry bearded friend crossed in front of me, I slowed down, his wife stopped on the kerb so I sped up again, then as I was right in front of her, she stepped straight out. I narrowly missed her. In between broken English, I got told I should be looking out and that I need to use my brakes and that people like me cause accidents.

12696920_10207751811420659_4912155896424712514_oI don’t understand the intolerance for cyclists. I drive a car too. People don’t want to be delayed by cyclists, but imagine if they all drove their cars, then you’d be stuck in worse traffic? What would you rather?

If you look around the world at some of the more progressive societies, bikes are starting to overtake cars as the primary transport. Unfortunately, I think we are a long way from this as most people don’t even understand the basics of where bikes can/can’t go.

There are some cyclists who cause trouble on the roads, there are some motorists that cause trouble on the roads and after my ride today, there are pedestrians who cause trouble. I think everyone needs to chill out, be a little more tolerant of people around them and learn the road rules before more people get hurt or killed.

On that note, there are new cycling laws in NSW starting 1st March, make sure you understand them if you’re riding a bike or driving a car. Link is here to an FAQ about them. (http://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/campaigns/go-together/faqs.html)

Thanks.
From a law abiding rego paying car driving part time cyclist.

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