Share the road?

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jonnyboy77
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Share the road?

Postby jonnyboy77 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:16 pm

A couple of recent run ins with angry drivers prompts me to post this question.

For those that know it, I ride up Richmond HIll from Richmond Bridge to Richmond Park most mornings. In places this road narrows with cars parked on the left, for a section that's about 150m long (at most) there isn't a safe amount of space for a car and bike side by side. 3 times now in the last month I have had a driver get close to my rear wheel, honking their horn and when I look around gesticulating for me to 'get out of their way'.

The section of road in question: http://goo.gl/maps/PWdy5

I'm a passive individual generally, but this morning's 3rd incident has left me feeling a little more incensed than normal. I do my best to be considerate to traffic, I make space where it's safe, look for opportunities to let faster vehicles go past when it safe etc. So this morning I stopped, got off the bike (I didn't approach the car but it was already pretty close) and tried to explain why excessive use of the horn was unnecessary, that there was not space to pass me, and that the driver ought to consider reading the Highway Code to better understand why they were wrong in their actions.

It fell on deaf ears. I was greeted with more arm waving. So I carried on at a reasonable pace, and pulled under where it was safe to be passed. More horn, then they were gone and I carried on.

Boring story perhaps. But the reason for my post is about how to attempt to tackle this 'anti social behaviour' and in talking to a few colleagues, not all cyclists. They all agreed that a non-confrontational approach of handing over a flyer of some sort, that quotes pertinent sections of the highway code, along with some very clear illustrations was a good idea.

I've looked at the Highway Code, and it's a little dry and ambigious in places, and doesn't seem to lend itself well to being used as is. https://www.gov.uk/browse/driving/highway-code

It's worth mentioning that this morning's driver has is responsible for 2 out of my 3 recent run ins, on the same stretch of road at roughly the same time - school run, I would guess as there's a child in the car too.

Next time, I would really like to be able to hand over this information, and calmly explain that the behaviour is not acceptable, contravenes the Highway Code and that I might consider a Police report as a means of highlighting my point.

So - to those that are still reading this ...

- a simple, concise and accurate A4 sized flyer to hand to drivers, Does one exist, would anyone be interested in helping create one? I see that back in 2008 Boris setup a TFL Share The Road campaign, but nothing seemed to really come of it. There are US and European initiatives/laws that help, something like this for example: http://www.sharetheroadapparel.com/main ... ry&path=36 that might provide inspiration.

- suggestions on tackling this repeat offender

- advice on what perhaps, if anything, I could do better/avoid doing. I hate confrontation but I also hate the idea that other cyclists might be more adversely affected by this driver's behaviour and other drivers who behave similarly.

Your collective constructive inputs welcome ...

- Jon
Commuting between Twickenham <---> Barbican on my trusty Ridgeback Hybrid - [strava]

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rjsterry
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Re: Share the road?

Postby rjsterry » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:34 pm

If he's trying to squeeze past and hooting at you, I think it's important to stay in primary unless you can safely pull in, just to avoid you getting barged into some parked cars. As for a flyer, I'm not so sure. He's not going to read it there and then if he's in a hurry, and it can well come across as a bit sanctimonious. You've as much right to be there as he has and he has to slow down a bit, then he should maybe consider not driving up such a narrow restricted road. I think the only way you'll get through to someone like this is to just not back down. If he engages you in, erm, conversation then just keep it as polite and calm as possible: I have as much right to ride up this road as you. The road is not wide enough for you to pass. I will pull in to let you past if there is space, but if there is not, you will have to wait until the road widens, as you would with any other vehicle. It will add at most a minute or two to your journey.
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jonnyboy77
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Re: Share the road?

Postby jonnyboy77 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:44 pm

rjsterry wrote:If he's trying to squeeze past and hooting at you, I think it's important to stay in primary unless you can safely pull in, just to avoid you getting barged into some parked cars. As for a flyer, I'm not so sure. He's not going to read it there and then if he's in a hurry, and it can well come across as a bit sanctimonious. You've as much right to be there as he has and he has to slow down a bit, then he should maybe consider not driving up such a narrow restricted road. I think the only way you'll get through to someone like this is to just not back down. If he engages you in, erm, conversation then just keep it as polite and calm as possible: I have as much right to ride up this road as you. The road is not wide enough for you to pass. I will pull in to let you past if there is space, but if there is not, you will have to wait until the road widens, as you would with any other vehicle. It will add at most a minute or two to your journey.


Good point about the potential sanctimony of a flyer. Interesting that you chose to assign a gender to the driver ...

My stance has been pretty much as you describe so far, however with this one driver having now approached me in the same way twice, I'm not convinced there won't be more run ins. Frankly it ruins a nice ride to work.

- Jon
Commuting between Twickenham <---> Barbican on my trusty Ridgeback Hybrid - [strava]

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gtvlusso
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Re: Share the road?

Postby gtvlusso » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:50 pm

jonnyboy77 wrote:So - to those that are still reading this ...

- a simple, concise and accurate A4 sized flyer to hand to drivers, Does one exist, would anyone be interested in helping create one? I see that back in 2008 Boris setup a TFL Share The Road campaign, but nothing seemed to really come of it. There are US and European initiatives/laws that help, something like this for example: http://www.sharetheroadapparel.com/main ... ry&path=36 that might provide inspiration.


You will be hit on the head with it, have it thrown across the street and be told 'Who do you think you are', or in Leeds; have it rammed down your throat for being arrogant/sanctimonious.

Who the hell has got space for an A4 binder on a bike?

jonnyboy77 wrote:- suggestions on tackling this repeat offender


Suggest a right hook normally, however, in cleats you may wish to go for the uppercut to avoid over balancing. MTFU and be fast enough to get away really quickly or join cyclechat.tits people and get a camera....because a camera makes it Soooooo much safer......and will give you a sense of; 'yeah, burned you sucker' when you upload a nice video and reg number to youtube....You can feel all superior and justify it to yourself in some bullsh*t way.....although you may not want to do this because it is plain silly.

jonnyboy77 wrote:- advice on what perhaps, if anything, I could do better/avoid doing. I hate confrontation but I also hate the idea that other cyclists might be more adversely affected by this driver's behavior and other drivers who behave similarly.


Ride primary, ride faster, shout 'fark orff' at considerable volume - make yourself 'look big' - develop the Lance 'Look'.....but still, ride faster.

jonnyboy77 wrote:Your collective constructive inputs welcome ...
- Jon


People who cannot see the initial fault in their abilities and tout unreasonable behavior are not interested in being 'educated'...FACT. Take Primary, don't back down, ride hard and make yourself look big - be over polite if you get a talking to, people hate that.....


F*ck 'em
:shock:

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Veronese68
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Veronese68 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:52 pm

I know exactly where you mean and I would do pretty much exactly as you have done. It's not a long stretch and you wouldn't be holding anyone up for that long. I also tend to agree with RJS that they probably wouldn't respond well to a flyer as they'd probably just throw it back at you. Unfortunately I would say that you have to accept that there are far too many idiots on this world and just hope you don't have to put up with too many of them.

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Rolf F
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Rolf F » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:53 pm

jonnyboy77 wrote:It's worth mentioning that this morning's driver has is responsible for 2 out of my 3 recent run ins, on the same stretch of road at roughly the same time - school run, I would guess as there's a child in the car too.


Sweeping generalisation but.... I have to agree with you there! Due to the potential for ice, I've been leaving late this week so as to be able to commute in in daylight. This has put me right into school run schedules. They scare the crap out of me. Oversized cars driven by people so concerned for the safety of their children that they don't care who they might kill - genuinely scary. A high proportion of them really shouldn't be on the roads for everyones safety.
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MrSweary
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Re: Share the road?

Postby MrSweary » Thu Jan 17, 2013 14:59 pm

I think there must be a few entitled pr**ks living up there because I've had similar experiences a couple of times.

I'd suggest giving the drivers an A4 flyer - be sure to wrap it tightly around a half brick. You may have to throw it quite hard to get it through their window.

Seriously though - I just completely ignore them whilst taking the lane and slowing up ever so slightly. At the same time I whisper an ancient curse that ensures their genitalia will become infected with worms.
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Veronese68
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Veronese68 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:00 pm

jonnyboy77 wrote:Interesting that you chose to assign a gender to the driver ...

Some of the worst language I've ever heard was two women screaming at each other as neither had pulled in to let the other pass on a narrow road with cars parked either side. The cars were nose to nose with these two bints effing and blinding at the tops of their voices. Both cars had young children in them. I said something about what a fine example they were seetting to their children as I squeezed through. I doubt either of them heard or understood what I said, but they both screamed at me to fork off. Laydees they were not.

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jonnyboy77
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Re: Share the road?

Postby jonnyboy77 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:01 pm

Some amusing replies. Thanks.

Any thoughts on the reporting to the Police angle? Is it really worth it, would they even be interested etc? I didn't mention in my original post that the repeat offender is a middle aged woman, purely to see what assumptions might be made. I do tend to think that a visit from a local Police officer might make her think twice next time.

One suggestion at work was not to walk to the side of the car, but to place the flyer on the windscreen under a wiper arm. I don't want to be accused of threatening a car driver, it's far from my intention - but I genuinely wonder how many drivers know what the rules are in relation to passing cyclists/vulnerable road users.

- Jon
Commuting between Twickenham <---> Barbican on my trusty Ridgeback Hybrid - [strava]

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Veronese68
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Veronese68 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:12 pm

Do you live close to there? If so is there one of those police neighbourhood teams. Have a word with them explaining what's happened and that it is imtimidating and that you do feel threatened. If they suggest getting off and walking point out to them that you have as much right to the road as she does and her antisocial behaviour shouldn't force legitimate users off the road.

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Re: Share the road?

Postby clarkey cat » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:13 pm

Ride primary. Give them the look of disgust. Pull over when safe.

Don't confront these people. They are scumheads.

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jonnyboy77
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Re: Share the road?

Postby jonnyboy77 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:15 pm

Veronese68 wrote:Do you live close to there? If so is there one of those police neighbourhood teams. Have a word with them explaining what's happened and that it is imtimidating and that you do feel threatened. If they suggest getting off and walking point out to them that you have as much right to the road as she does and her antisocial behaviour shouldn't force legitimate users off the road.


Sensible. A repeat occurrence with the same driver and I will note down the number plate and try this, has to be worth giving it a go.
Commuting between Twickenham <---> Barbican on my trusty Ridgeback Hybrid - [strava]

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Wallace1492
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Wallace1492 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:18 pm

jonnyboy77 wrote:Some amusing replies. Thanks.

Any thoughts on the reporting to the Police angle? Is it really worth it, would they even be interested etc? I didn't mention in my original post that the repeat offender is a middle aged woman, purely to see what assumptions might be made. I do tend to think that a visit from a local Police officer might make her think twice next time.

One suggestion at work was not to walk to the side of the car, but to place the flyer on the windscreen under a wiper arm. I don't want to be accused of threatening a car driver, it's far from my intention - but I genuinely wonder how many drivers know what the rules are in relation to passing cyclists/vulnerable road users.

- Jon


definitely worth reporing to the Police. Get the numberplate the next time and do it, or maybe you have it already. Be very polite to the Police, courteous and act all scared and that you were really fearing for your safety as you felt extremely intimidated and in danger. Stress that it has happened a few times from the same driver and that you are genuinely concerened that it could have a nasty outcome. The Police are there to protect your safety and your use of the roads as well, so should act on what you tell them. Be friendly and ask them to tell you (in general if possible) of outcome of their chat with said motorist.

Get the Police onside and they should be helpful and actually act on your report.
"Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"

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iPete
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Re: Share the road?

Postby iPete » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:18 pm

clarkey cat wrote:Ride primary. Give them the look of disgust. Pull over when safe.

Don't confront these people. They are scumheads.


This, never had an issue up there but if I did they'd get a glare and sarcastic kiss at best.

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zx6man
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Re: Share the road?

Postby zx6man » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:19 pm

Sticker for your coat, bit like in cars.


My other "Bike" is a police car.

MrSweary
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Re: Share the road?

Postby MrSweary » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:20 pm

Obviously take a note of their plates and make a note of each time it happens - you could try speaking to the local fuzz especially in the case of a repeat offender. Don't hold your breath for a meaningful response though.

Overall, don't react. Hold your ground and ride as you normally would. Take it as an opportunity to practise your zen skills.
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Kieran_Burns
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Kieran_Burns » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:24 pm

GTV may explode when I say this, but I took my camera footage to the Police who interviewed the driver and showed him the footage.

I got an apology and have never been buzzed by this driver since.

Just saying.
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jonnyboy77
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Re: Share the road?

Postby jonnyboy77 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:28 pm

Kieran_Burns wrote:GTV may explode when I say this, but I took my camera footage to the Police who interviewed the driver and showed him the footage.

I got an apology and have never been buzzed by this driver since.

Just saying.


The thought crossed my mind. I did buy a cheap camera from Amazon but returned it as the mounts were beyond hopeless. Looking for a replacement at the moment. It's primary use was actually for video footage on the mountain bike, but it could be brought into play for the odd commute in this instance.

Some very useful/interesting & amusing replies :)

- Jon
Commuting between Twickenham <---> Barbican on my trusty Ridgeback Hybrid - [strava]

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gtvlusso
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Re: Share the road?

Postby gtvlusso » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:32 pm

Kieran_Burns wrote:GTV may explode when I say this, but I took my camera footage to the Police who interviewed the driver and showed him the footage.

I got an apology and have never been buzzed by this driver since.

Just saying.


This is fine; I don't mind this - it is a private matter and should be kept private.

Bugs the sh*t outta me when it gets uploaded to youtube with the reg number......comes across as arrogant and 'getting your own back'....and usually for a nothing incident.

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Wallace1492
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Re: Share the road?

Postby Wallace1492 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 15:33 pm

"D" lock the c***.......unless like Tarquin, you have broken key in said D lock and it is currently locking your other bike to some bike parking furniture in London, awaiting arrival of some sort of small explosive device.
"Encyclopaedia is a fetish for very small bicycles"


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