Cyclists: You’re A Menace To Society
So there’s this case of Daniel Rosier that went to court in Oxford last week.
He cycled past a line of cars at a pedestrian crossing, but didn’t stop, and hit a pedestrian. THEN he stopped, and helped the child he’d hit, and looked after them ’till the boy’s parents arrived.
Anyway, he broke the law, and last week was given a Conditional Discharge at Oxford Magistrates Court. He was also ordered to pay £60 costs and £75 compensation. Fair enough, although Daniel did rather open himself up to the press by then complaining. As it was reported in the Times today, Daniel Rosier said:
“I felt awful when I hit him. I am pleased with the outcome today, but why was this taken to court in the first place?
“My problem was that I stopped and helped. If I had carried on, nothing would have happened. I am quite upset about the whole thing.
“I have a criminal record now. If I have to apply for a job, I would have to declare it. I think it is very unfair.”
I don’t have too much sympathy with this. But was he saying that it was unfair that out of all the cyclists in all the towns in all of England, he’s the only one that gets prosecuted? Or is it unfair that when a cyclists does this sort of thing it makes the national press, while if a driver hits a pedestrian, then stops to offer assistance, no-one thinks anything of it? Or is it unfair that every time you go out, you’ll see drivers behind the wheel with a phone clamped to their ear, yet nothing seems to be done about them?
As the article in The Times says,
There has been growing concern about cyclists causing injury to pedestrians.
Let’s put this into perspective, with some figures from London (the UK’s capital of menacing, law-breaking, red-light jumping two-wheeled anarchist terrors) for 2001-05 (figures from CTC):
- There were 101 times as many reported pedestrian injuries due to collisions with motor vehicles than with pedal cycles (there were 34,791 pedestrian injuries involving motor vehicles, compared with 331 involving cycles).
- Motor vehicles were involved in 126 times as many fatal and serious pedestrian injuries as cycles (there were 7,447 fatal and serious injuries involving motor vehicles compared with 59 involving cycles).
- 534 pedestrians were killed in collisions with motor vehicles, compared with just one killed in collision with a cycle. That one fatal collision with a cycle occurred neither on a pavement nor a pedestrian crossing point.
- Even on the pavement, there were 2,197 reported pedestrian injuries arising from collisions with motor vehicles, including 17 fatalities. These injuries outnumbered those involving cycles by a factor of 42 to 1.
- The total number of reported pedestrian injuries in London due to collisions with cyclists on pavements was just 65 in the year 2001, and 69 in 2005. In the meantime, the figure went down, up and back down again, showing no clear overall trend. This was despite a 72% increase in cycle use over the period.
- On average just under 18% of cyclists ran red lights, whereas over a third of motorists encroached into cyclists’ “Advance Stop Lines” (cycle boxes at traffic lights).
Focusing on just that third point: 534 pedestrians were killed by drivers of motor vehicles, compared with one killed by someone riding a bike. Now, one is one too many, but FIVE HUNDRED AND THIRTY FOUR is a pretty big elephant in the room that the press does a great job of ignoring.