READER REPORT:

A cyclist's view of bad driving

NIGEL WILSON
Last updated 13:12 26/11/2012

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Further to the story, 'Bad driving - caught in the act', I too have resorted to using a helmet camera.

I am a cyclist who regularly commutes between Rangiora and Christchurch.

I resorted to the helmet a couple of years ago due to the regular nature of inconsiderate driving putting my life at risk.

From a cyclist's perspective, I have come to the realisation that:

(a) Too many drivers have absolutely no appreciation of what it is like to be a cyclist. The road code states a recommended passing gap of 1.5 metres. While this may not always be possible, too many drivers make little or no effort to maximise the gap when passing.

(b) Drivers are conditioned to look for moving vehicles and so a cursory glance is all they take, with the thought that they will see large moving things. The result, they don't see a cyclist, or they see the cyclist but don't take sufficient time to evaluate the speed at which the cyclist is travelling.

I had my first collision earlier this year when I driver pulled out at an intersection in front of me. Thankfully, I was uninjured but I needed a replacement front wheel. Ironically it cost up to $2000 to repair the panels on the van. This accident has had a lasting effect on my riding confidence and now I am quite paranoid at intersections.

The other aspect I have noted is the number of people running red lights - it is appalling how many people are in such a rush that they are happy to break the law for their own selfish benefit.

My motto: slow down, relax, enjoy some music and get there safely, albeit one or two minutes later.


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