New edition of Effective Cycling published

posted Jun 2, 2012, 10:57 AM by RCC Admin.   [ updated Jun 2, 2012, 11:24 AM ]
Effective Cycling 7th Edition by John Forester is now available from  Amazon @ CAD$25.04. 

Effective Cycling is the codification of normal everyday cycling as it has been practised since the invention of the safety bicycle over 100 years ago. 
It was Forester that coined the axiom, "Cyclists fare best when they act and are treated as drivers of vehicles".
Canada's Can-Bike cycling instruction program is based on the principles espoused by the book's author. 

This book belongs in the library of any cyclist who wants to maximize the enjoyment of cycling and minimize its risks.  
Commenting about the new edition, he says changes in equipment and in governmental actions have caused those sections to have the greatest revisions, as well as part of the traffic cycling section. 

The bicycle maintenance section has been revised to reflect the changes in equipment and maintenance that have occurred in the last decades. Some information on older equipment has been retained for the use of those who are still using it. 

Since there has been no worthwhile research into accident statistics done in the last few decades, that section has had very little revision. The greatest changes have been in the areas concerning the interaction between cyclists and  government, from traffic skills to governmental programs. 

For decades, American governmental policy had been to restrict cyclists (to the edge of the roadway and to bikeways) using the argument that cyclists are incapable of obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles.  Effective Cycling's earlier editions argued that obeying those rules was both best for cyclists and easy to do. Now American governmental policy has reversed itself, in a way, so it now encourages onto our roadways just those cyclists deemed incapable of obeying the rules of the road. The seventh edition of Effective Cycling continues to demonstrate the advantages of obeying the rules of the road, but it also emphasizes the importance of not doing whatever the governmental policy and its bikeways appear to encourage. At the level of traffic-cycling skills this produces much more emphasis on a cyclist controlling the lane he or she occupies, together with the engineering analysis of the motorist-overtaking-cyclist situation demonstrating that, in most cases, controlling the lane precludes no opportunities for safe and lawful overtaking. For most lane widths, having cyclists operate far right  encourages only dangerous and unlawful overtaking through the narrow gap between the cyclist and the traffic in the adjacent lane. At the level of political action, this new emphasis, while recognizing that it is impossible to reverse the governmental policy encouraging incompetent cycling and the bikeways it produces, is a clarion call for lawful, competent cyclists to work together to get repeal of those laws that prevent cyclists from obeying the standard rules of the road instead of the rules for supposedly incapable bicycle riders.