LETTER: Care and attention is sadly lacking

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Peter Hillman’s letter expressing his dissatisfaction with the implementation of Advanced Stop Lines for cyclists in Horsham made me smile.

I’m a cyclist and a driver so his complaint that the end result of the ASL’s might be ‘varying degrees of irritation’ to drivers almost made me laugh out loud.

My safety whilst cycling trumps any amount of driver inconvenience and attendant irritation and I’m delighted to see the ASLs.

They send a very clear message and I look forward to them being installed at every traffic-light-controlled junction in the town.

Regrettably some drivers, irritated on not, seem to think they are a law unto themselves, parking on pavements and driving across and along them to avoid waiting at junctions.

Jumping red traffic lights, especially at pedestrian crossings, amber gambling with depressing regularity, constant speeding in 30mph zones where people live, using their mobiles while driving, the list goes on and on and includes an inability to safely overtake cyclists if my experience is anything to go by.

The degree of law-breaking, and lack of care and attention, exhibited by drivers in the town and district, and the risk to other road users that this represents, is several orders of magnitude greater than that of cyclists; even those cyclists I would regard as little more than ‘idiots on a bike’.

As to cyclists riding two abreast on narrow country roads? Perfectly legal and often the safest option in a group; 20 cyclists riding two abreast presents much less of a challenge to the limited overtaking skills and patience of the district’s drivers than does one line of 20 cyclists riding single file.

I’ll ride two abreast when riding with less experienced riders to offer them a degree of protection from the ill-judged close passes from drivers that seem to happen on every ride when in single file.

Once again safety trumps driver convenience.

All that is required to keep cyclists safe is for drivers to drive with the due care and attention that the law demands from them.

Due care and attention that is sadly all too lacking on our local roads based on the regular reports of ‘accidents’ and court cases in the WSCT.

Mr Hillman needs to be reminded that cyclists have a right to ride on the road; drivers require a licence.


Hurst Road, Horsham