Dangerous drivers and cyclists deserve the same punishment
The CTC’s Roger Geffen (ibid) and others are trying to avoid the original points under discussion concerning cyclists and road safety. Equity and justice in law aren’t ‘numbers games’ – they are about ensuring that being killed by a dangerous cyclist merits the same punishment as being killed by a dangerous driver. Currently this is not the case and needs to be changed.
Furthermore, it’s not okay for cyclists to ignore red lights just because ‘nothing happened’ as Mr Geffen seems to suggest, any more than it’s okay for drivers to do the same.
Hence my point about cycling hypocrisy. Road safety is a bit like charity – it begins at home. Don’t rely on others to make up for your own irresponsible behaviour.
Cycling on roads will always be a dangerous activity
Robert Gifford of PACTS.
It is a pity that Roger Geffen of the CTC, the national cyclists’ organisation, spoils his letter by referring to that of Paul Biggs’ as a “rant” (ibid). It seems to be a favourite word for cyclists; even when responding to simple fact.
Of course drivers and motor vehicles cause most injuries to all humans on the road. They are very large lumps of machinery, travel at speed and under any circumstances, other than economic necessity and expediency, humans amongst such machinery would be banned under health and safety rules.
But these vehicles do about 300 billion miles a year between them and, for all that, achieve less death on the road, from any cause, than from accidents in the home. One would not think so when we think of all the expensive quangos, charities and Parliamentary lobby groups, all thriving at the expense of the driver. One only has to look at the massive road safety supplement to this paper and Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety executive director Robert Gifford’s justification of even more money to be ploughed into his industry as an example of that.
But why do we have a debate at all on bicycles vs the motor car? The two are not remotely similar. One is a tiny minority activity and the other is used either by or for all 60 million of us. One would not be missed at all economically but the economy would collapse entirely without the other.
Flesh amongst large moving lumps of metal must be dangerous and end in tears; it’s a no brainer. Of course the roads are dangerous places for any unprotected human.