Do You Have A Sixth Sense When It Comes To Other Road Users?
Take a look at this film from Andyb0000 on YouTube - pause it and note down the time in the film at which you’d identified what was going to happen:
Thankfully, Andy is on the mend, but his footage raises some interesting questions about the degree of vigilance that’s needed to ride on the roads these days. I’d actually thought that the black Audi was going to turn across his path, as it seemed to be the faster of the two vehicles. The driver of the green Ford has the sun behind him, and is virtually pointing towards Andy, who is the only "vehicle" he has to give way to on this roundabout - is there any shred of an excuse for a SMIDSY here?
Then I wonder if Andy could have ridden the approach differently - a little further over to the right to be more assertively visible? Or just riding with the assumption that every driver with an opportunity to do something stupid & unexpected will grab that chance with both hands? I don’t mean this in a Daily Rag blame-the-victim sort of way, just that having seen this film, I’d probably ride these roads differently. Sort of hindsight being a wonderful teacher, especially when it’s someone else who experienced the pain you learn from.
When it comes down to it though, I firmly believe that to ride on the roads amongst traffic, you do need a sixth sense. It’s the ability to see . . .
- When someone is about to change lane - even though nothing’s changed in their road position, and they haven’t signaled yet
- When a door is about to open into your path
- That the boy racer coming up behind is going to apex the next bend, while he’s alongside you
The trouble is that learning this takes time and experience. While newly qualified kids with their BikeAbility badges are on the roads this summer, I just hope none of them has a wide-eyed friend standing on the pavement explaining how he sees dead people . . .