Saturday, November 28, 2015

George the Cyclist

Having been lazy enough to do nothing for over 12 months , i am going to make an effort to get back into Blogging monthly . It appears that people have contined to visit my blogs during the interim and so i should like to express THANKS for their persistance !

During the period that i have neglected to add to my catalogue , i hope that some of you have been following the exploits of " ". i have seen the occasional reference to myself during the past 12 months .

No doubt there are many that have seen George on the road as he has Cycled the routes of " Le Tour ' if not on the roads in the USA ?  Seems like he has been in most parts of the world and in the near future , i hope he points me to some of the places visited whilst in Australia  . Local to the area i am staying in currently , is another character that i met in Monaco at the Start of that Tour de France . Vince has Cycled the Le Tour route with George on several visits to Europe . This year was after arriving in Frankfurt and Cycling to Utrecht .

Whilst i will leave you to discover George's adventures for yourselves , i will add a quote in relation toi Ralph Nader , whose exploits in 1970s regarding Chrysler Cars , brought him to my attention and encouraged me to question many attitudes of retailers towards their clients . Nobody enjoys being fobbed off with 2nd class goods and being overcharged ?  i question every attempt to dupe me by those to whom i have to tender monies for goods or services !

Here is the item mentioned : :

  "  The early podcasts were mostly Nader being interviewed by his two co-hosts.  It soon evolved into Nader interviewing one or two guests who supported his favorite causes--single-payer health care, election reform, exposing corporate crime, auto safety, Palestine, banking reform, independent farmers.  Most of his guests say it is an honor to be on Nader's show and that he has been an inspiration. He has certainly been responsible for an incredible amount of things that we take for granted--seat belts, no smoking on airplanes, constructions vehicles beeping when they go in reverse.  Nader doesn't gloat.  He says anyone with a fire in the belly can effect change. He certainly would have  shaken up the established order if he had gained the White House."


Sunday, November 2, 2014


Finally the New " Safe Pass of Cyclists Law " has been tested in Court !  Once again the member of the Judiciary presiding , has seen fit to take issue with the Legislation . A helmet camera's footage was introduced as evidence , thus causing the conviction to be recorded .

Clearly shown was an overtake by a bus , this with some width for the Cyclist . " Tailgating " was a truck , which due to the lack of view up the road , came TOO CLOSE to the Cyclist . Yes , he did not HIT the Cyclist , BUT , had he stayed back further from theBus , he may well have given more space to the Cyclist ?

The 67yo Truck Driver claims that he has quit driving trucks , BUT , has he quit driving a car in such a dangerous manner , that he will once again come upon a Cyclist when " Tailgating "?

Before the court was ONLY one charge ?  Had the magistrate been required to rule on the " TailGating " would he have " waived " that FINE and loss of Points ?

Having reported this matter , the local rag , which allows comments to it's website , has been inundated with commentary .  I watch Jay Leno & Jimmy Fallon on TV and their humour PALES in comparison to some that i have read . Seems that the average " Anti Cyclist Queenslander " , has some strange views on the Cyclists v Drivers Culture ( WAR ? only as far as those looking for CLICK BAIT are concerned ) , some of the 450+ are shown below .

Cycling all over Europe i have seen the occasional " Rego of Cycles ( Swiss have given up now ) " yet it is quite clear that it does not work .  Question of cost as against benefit ?  How often do you hear of a Cyclist hitting a Pedestrian and fleeing ?  How often do you hear of a Vehicle , hitting a Pedestrian and Fleeing ? It appears that there is so few Cyclists causing harm , that the Authorities realise that there is no great benefit to the Community to create additional expense to the taxpayer ?

Whilst i ride 20/25000km each year , i am coming to0 the conclusion that the average driver , even here in the Tirol of Austria is becoming TOO Complacent in their attitude to Cyclists .

UNTIL the Emergency Services ( Polizei , Ambulance & Fire Services practice the Road Rules they have been trained with )  demonstrate in their normal duties the Road Rules , then " Jo Public " will continue to adopt the complacency that they fall into , once they have obtained their " Driver permit/FuhrerShein ". It is also necessary for them to demonstrate care when in an Emergency Mode , but the requirement is then on other Road Users to move to the side of the road to allow their swift /unimpeded passage .

After nearly being " T Boned " yesterday by a black Hyundai 4x4  , then harrassed by the driver for being in his way , after he pulled out of a minor road , passing in front of an oncoming eastbound white station wagon, that he chose to ignore . I can only conclude that his " Dangerous Driving " was a deliberate attempt at Bodily Injury ! Riding off the road into the grass , is not my favourite way of riding at 30+kph on a sunny morning . When i returned to the ashphalt , he pulled alongside with the window open , mouthing off in the German/Dialect that he is accustomed to use . No point in that as i did not understand him , or whatever purpose he was trying to achieve .  I then had him do a series of kangaroo stops as he proceeded up the road attempting to impede my progress either on the RHS of the Road , or on the centre of the road . I was unwilling to overtake him , for fear of the consequences , but i got a GOOD LOOK at his face . Suffice to say i could pick him out of a line up very easily !

When i returned to the local polizei station , i found a Polizei People Mover , but they chose to drive off rather than hear what i had to relay to them . It will come as no surprise that the Polizei Front Door was locked , since this was a " Holiday of Obligation for the Catholic Church " and ALL the shops were closed as is the case in smaller communities .  Eventually the 3 striper , who at 57yo would not be expected to be fluent in English , came to the door and had to recall the Polizei Vehicle to conduct the interview . At this time the Number Plate i relayed does not match ANY recorded ?  Well that was the end of that .... for today anyway .

Another case of a Cyclist being disbelieved ? We shall see !  No point being told to SELL THE BIKES AND WALK , by a Woman police Officer , who thinks that there are more Cycle Paths , than actually exist! Funny how somethings can be voiced in English and other things are too hard to follow through ?

Some excerpts from the Brisbane Courier Mail :

Some commonsense remarks

"  loyd 3 days ago
Most of the comments on here are totally irrational.

1 Police cannot charge anyone purely on number plates. That is why the law was changed to make speed cameras legal but it still doesn't apply to live coppers. They MUST identify the driver at the time. (Unless they con you into admitting it)

2 Any cyclist who rides on the road takes the same risk as any other road user. If you are unfortunate you get hit. It is no different to wearing a bikini in a dark alley. IT IS RISKY regardless of what the law says.. Anyone , cyclist or other wise is responsible for assessing their own risks. Why should there be 'special' laws which are totally unenforceable.

3 The law is an ass. If this photo is the evidence it should have been thrown doesn't prove anything.

In this country roads are primarily for motorised transport. Diffferential speeds are the cause of accidents..


Glenn 2 days ago
@loyd "If you are unfortunate you get hit. It is no different to wearing a bikini in a dark alley" Probably the best reasoning for a murder charge to apply when you kill another road user. Every time we drive a motor vehicle we should know the risks and look after our fellow humans.

Riddley 3 days ago
@Delivery Cyclists often suggest we should have a "Drive-to-Work" day. It will never happen, of course, but it would be fun to see the gridlock caused when all the regular cyclists add to the already congested roads.

We do have a "Ride-to-Work" day, and it is a very successful event, with lots of new riders trying out an alternative mode of transport. Some go back to their usual, but there are always some who implement cycling as their normal commute. Less traffic, more carparks, what's not to love.

Julianne 3 days ago
@Riddley @Delivery It's not fun to be stuck in gridlock when a group of cyclists line up sideways along the road and take up the whole lane. They should be riding single file!
mark 3 days ago
@Julianne @Riddley @Delivery if you say it enough it still doesn't make it the truth - it is actually legal to ride 2 abreast
Julianne 3 days ago
@mark @Julianne @Riddley @Delivery Yes, TWO abreast. Not 5 cyclists in a group taking the whole lane. I am a cyclist AND a motorist and I still think that most cyclists are using this to jump on the bandwagon and winge for favoritism. I see far more angst and law-breaking from other cyclists than I do from other motorists.
mark 3 days ago
@Julianne @mark @Riddley @Delivery so you ride a bike but at the same time say "they" don't pay rego so "they" should not be allowed on the road? Which is it?
Julianne 3 days ago
@mark @Julianne @Riddley @Delivery  Yes, we don't have to pay registration for our bikes, while we DO have to pay for our motor vehicles. As a cylist, I personally believe that WE (cyclists) should pay registration so that we can be identified and not be harrassed by THEM (motorists). I also believe that cyclists (THEY) should pay registration so that WE (motorists) can blah blah blah etc... have you ever heard of perspective?

Riddley 3 days ago
The reality is that cycling as a normal mode of transport is growing quite rapidly in every Australian Capital city. And it can be Labor or Liberal, they both see the benefits of increasing cycling. (This may change in Adelaide depending on the outcome of elections there soon)
Government policy at all levels, especially local and State explicitly promote cycling for commuting and for recreation, and laws are being changed to improve safety outcomes.

What is really lacking is the infrastructure to support this growth. As a driver I want to see a lot more cyclists on the roads as this significantly reduces congestion and therefore improves my trip times.

As a cyclist one of the major elements to safer cycling is more cyclists on the roads (the others being proper facilities and proper laws). So I benefit from that.
Glenn 2 days ago
@Julianne @Donnie @Mick Roads are funded through consolidated revenue such as tax. Car rego comprises almost entirely of insurance (to cover the personal injuries caused by motor vehicles) and a smaller rego fee to cover the costs of registering vehicles. NOTHING goes to building or maintaining roads required by the selfish single occupant motorists commuting in peak hour rush. Therefore, a cyclist which cause practically no damage to the roads but still pays taxes is SUBSIDING MOTORISTS.

Now for other  offerings :
Bettina 3 days ago
The point being, the cyclist 1) placed his own life in danger by impeding traffic 2) was morally in the wrong for inconveniencing not just the truck driver, but more than likely a whole row of following vehicles and 3) potentially caused a dangerous situation by causing vehicles following the truck and unaware of the cyclist causing the hold up, trying to overtake under dangerous circumstances. All this could have been avoided if the cyclist had the slightest consideration for other road users and dismounted on the slow uphill stretch and walked the bike on the footpath.

However, the cyclist has the RIGHT to use the road and he was damn well going to use it!!!
Edward 3 days ago
Regardless of what you think you know, the facts are that the Stay Wider of the Rider campaign is here, and you need to obey the law as does all road users. No one is exempt.

Search for 'Stay Wider Than the Rider' on the TMR, Queensland Road Authority, website.  It has all the information you should be adhering to in order to be safe and keep others safe also.
Peter 3 days ago
“I hate the thought of him (the complainant) sitting there sipping his latte and laughing at me.”

Jimbo 3 days ago
@Peter Or conversely, the cyclist could retort with – "I hate the thought of him (the defendant) sitting there watching Today Tonight, sipping his XXXX Gold and laughing at me."
Either way, I think it's clear that making generalisations doesn't add anything to this rather serious issue.
Cedar 3 days ago
Cyclists should be allowed to cycle on any road without the fear of being hit by a motor vehicle. Also, they should not pay registration but rather be compensated on there motor vehicle rego for using a bike to get around. After all they not wearing out the roads anywhere near as much as a motor vehicle does.
Jerry 3 days ago
@Cedar It's very dangerous though so they should at least have insurance to cover their medical expenses
James 3 days ago
@Jerry @Cedar and display registered identification.
Chris 3 days ago
@Jerry @Cedar The vast majority of those road bike riders would have insurance by virtue of club and Bike Queensland membership.
Glenn 2 days ago
@Jerry @Cedar Cyclists are covered by the TAC premium of the offending motorists CTP. Cyclists don't need CTP because they don't cause such personal harm on others. (That is fact, not opinion)
Julianne 3 days ago
@Cedar motor vehicles should be allowed to drive on the road without risk of being hit by oncoming traffic who were trying to avoid a cyclist! I pay registration on my vehicle, you don't. You have the opportunity to ride up onto the verge or footpath if a vehicle gets too close, WE don't have anywhere else to go.
Bill 3 days ago
Why is it that vehicles have the 1.5m rule but cyclists don't.  The number of times my poor bus drivers have to carefully fight traffic to pass a cyclist only to have the cyclist fly up beside the bus again when the bus is stopped at lights.  The driver then has to fight his way past the cyclist again and again and again.  Fine cyclist who speed up the inside or middle of traffic for not giving the 1.5m rule.  They should stay behind the vehicle they are at when they come to lights or stop signs, just like a car has too.
Chris 3 days ago
@Bill Here's a hint. Motor vehicles are bigger and faster. Ever sat there at lights and had a car go past at 60+kph and noticed your car gets buffeted by the wind? That effect when you're on a bike can actually suck you towards the wheels of the vehicle and result in you falling under it, or the car following. At 1m under 60kph, that force is small enough to not be a significant risk. Over 60kph, 1.5m. Over 100kph it really needs to be 2m+ but the government decided to leave it at 1.5m because few cyclists ride on roads at 100kph (again forgetting regional Queensland).

As for having the ability to "filter" through traffic, well if cyclists didn't have the right to do that they wouldn't bother. They'd just hop in their car and join the queue and make it even longer. 

The real issue that you're describing is lack of space on the road. This can be solved with more bike lanes through city and urban areas, particularly bus routes, and reduction of on street parking on those same routes.
Julianne 3 days ago
@Chris @Bill Yes, I have felt the wind from a vehicle going past... at the legal speed. You are on a bike, a smaller, lighter "vehicle" which can easily get sucked into the wind stream, just like a pedestrian would. That's a great argument for NOT letting bikes onto the roads, but rather giving them their own dedicated bike lanes!

Have you ever crawled along in a car at 5klm per hour, in a huge stream of traffic, being late for work, school or what have you, simply because a cyclist was on the road and no one could get past due to these new laws?

I have been in traffic holdups far more in my car than I've been "terrorised" by a car going past when I've been on my bike. I cant collect my 2yr old grand-daughter from daycare or my daughter from school on my bike so I opt to drive when required. 

I think it's a fair statement that if WE have to keep a particular distance and have to be constantly held up in traffic due to riders, then riders should NOT be allowed to weave through traffic.
Bettina 3 days ago
I agree more bike bike riders expense via bike registration costs.
Mick 3 days ago
If you cause an accident and cycle off, someone reports your number and police come calling. If your bike was stolen or you can show you have sold it (you would remove the plate anyways and re-register your new bike).  Minimal cost to a cycling family one year.

And as an ex-Transport & Main Roads employee, yes Car rego has nothing to do with building roads. That funding comes out of general revenues. So anti-cyclists please quit yammering that cyclists need to pay to be on the roads because you're not helping the discussion. They do need to be identifiable.

NO DOUBT there will be Other Prosecutions in the Queensland Courts where , a similar case will include ALL the visible offences !

Hopefully the driver when convicted will put his hands up and admit that it was HIS DOING , not a Cyclist with the NEED to protect HIS LIFE ! 


Friday, October 10, 2014


Chris Boardman tells it how it should be , as copied from the Guardian :

We can't let lobbyists destroy London's segregated cycle lane plans
The main political parties and 60 big employers support ‘Crossrail for bikes’ – yet behind the scenes there are intense efforts to poison the project, says Chris Boardman

Cyclists v lobbyists: the gloves are off
Reality check: will ‘Crossrail for bikes’ bring gridlock?

Blackfriars junction
How Blackfriars junction could look under the mayor’s segregated cycle lane plan
There is a battle going on in central London right now which will decide its future, and perhaps the future of every other city centre in Britain. Officially, it’s about cycling – in particular, Boris Johnson’s plan for a new segregated cycle superhighway from Tower Hill to Hyde Park Corner. In reality, it is a battle about health, about noise, about pollution, about the kind of cities we want to live in – and the kind of politics we want to have.

All the political parties support the superhighway scheme. So do more than 60 big London employers, including RBS, Deloitte, Orange and Unilever. Two years ago, more than a million Londoners elected Johnson on a promise to “implement three Dutch-style cycle schemes [with] segregated bike tracks” and “complete the superhighways to Dutch standards”.

What the mayor proposes is big by cycling standards, but not that big by most other standards. It involves converting one of the four traffic lanes into a cycle track on Upper Thames Street and the Victoria Embankment, a stretch of road all of two and a half miles long. Some motorists’ journeys will take longer, but most of the delays are small and some journeys will actually be quicker. The average delay along the route at the busiest two peak hours is 1 minute 26 seconds.

Yet behind the scenes there is an intense lobbying operation to destroy the plans, led by just one company, Canary Wharf Group, and by the City of London Corporation. These opponents will not speak against the scheme in public. They know that the majority even of business opinion is not with them and they stand little chance of winning any debate held in the open. They know that they will be seen as old men in limos. They know that most Londoners, who do not drive in the centre, sympathise with making central London less car-dominated. So instead, they are trying to poison the project in secret without leaving any fingerprints.

Canary Wharf, a major donor to the Conservative Party, has heavily lobbied the mayor and his staff. A PR company employed by the group has distributed a briefing which the scheme’s supporters say contains numerous misrepresentations and errors of fact. Another business lobbyist funded by Canary Wharf has toured the party conferences claiming, wrongly, that the superhighways will delay traffic in London by 6%. As Michael Liebreich, a member of the Transport for London board, has said, this is not the way that a decision like this should be made.

The City Corporation has taken a slightly subtler approach, claiming to support the superhighways “in principle” but demanding delays to their implementation which might well, in practice, stymie them. The Corporation attacks the scheme as “heavily biased towards cycling”.

That feels a little like opposing Crossrail on the grounds that it is heavily biased towards trains – but it’s wrong anyway. It is not just cyclists who will benefit from the new routes.

The superhighway will be able to carry 3,000 people an hour. That is the equivalent of putting 10 extra trains an hour on the District and Circle Tube lines running beneath the route, at a fraction of the cost in capital works and disruption. It is the equivalent of running 41 extra buses an hour, at a fraction of the cost in roadspace and emissions.

Every extra person who cycles is freeing up space for another person on the Tube, the buses, or the roads. Every extra person who cycles is improving not just their own health, but other people’s
health, because bikes do not cause pollution. Everywhere else this has been tried – London is way behind many other world cities – it has made the streets more pleasant for everyone, and more profitable places to do business. Cycling is a catalyst to change our country for the better.

Cyclists are already a quarter of the rush-hour traffic in central London. Their numbers have trebled in the last decade, while motor traffic has dropped by a fifth. We know that far more people than this want to cycle, but are put off by the lack of provision and the perception of danger. In the 19 months since Johnson announced his plans, 23 cyclists have been killed on London’s roads. Ten of those people, nearly half, died at places where the mayor is proposing to instal segregated cycle lanes or junctions.

In the end, the limo-users’ view of how London is governed, like their view of how London travels around, feels out of date. Deals behind the scenes were how it was done when the city was run by Whitehall. But under an elected mayor, the public should decide and the debates should be held in public.

Boris Johnson has shown real leadership on cycling. He is the only British politician to have matched bold words with bold actions. I do not believe he will back down in the face of such crude pressure.

Olympic champion and former world hour record holder Chris Boardman is a policy adviser for British Cycling

Reality check: will ‘Crossrail for bikes’ bring gridlock to London?
Cyclists v lobbyists: the gloves are off