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Discussion in 'Cycling' started by boyo, Mar 19, 2014.

  1. boyo Mark Ella (57)

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    My concern is of the safety of cyclists.

    In light of the recent crash on Southern Cross Drive this is apparent. There have been countless similar incidents.

    In a previous life, as for any ambulance officer, I have seen first-hand the effects of injury and death.

    Safety solutions

    Saying the way to stop accidents on Southern Cross Drive is for motorists to put safety first is a bit like saying that we don't need guards on machinery in the workplace as people ought to know not to put their fingers in there (Letters, March 18).
    The fact is cars on Southern Cross Drive are doing four times the speed of cyclists and the inevitable will happen. I stopped riding that route when the M5 was built. What has happened is tragic and the NSW government is at fault for not stopping cyclists.
    David Hodkinson Newport

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/comment/smh-letters/so-it-seems-bipartisanship-is-easily-reached-when-it-suits-20140318-35086.html#ixzz2wMaVrdA9

  2. Braveheart81 Rocky Elsom (76)

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    I went past that accident on Sunday morning. It was indeed horrific and I was only there once all the injured cyclists had been taken away in ambulances.

    The broken bicycles strewn for roughly 100 metres along Southern Cross Drive were confronting enough.

    The riders were all clubmates of my Dad and his partner and she normally rides with that group. Up until a month or two ago she was doing that same Sunday morning ride with that group. She's doing a different Sunday ride at the moment and thankfully wasn't part of the carnage.

    The problem is that Southern Cross Drive is the only realistic route to access the southern parts of Sydney for cyclists.

    To suggest that the cyclists shouldn't be on the road is ridiculous in my opinion. They need to be somewhere and riding in large groups early on a Sunday morning when traffic is at its quietest is the most appropriate thing to do.

    It appeared that the driver ran straight into the back of the pack of cyclists at high speed. There were no issues with lack of visibility ahead or similar. Unless you separate cyclists and cars completely, there will always be a risk of this happening.

    The horrendous attitude many drivers seem to have towards cyclists doesn't help the situation.
  3. cyclopath Stirling Mortlock (74)

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    @Braveheart81 I drive that route multiple times a week, in all different levels of traffic, weekdays and at weekends. Packs of cyclists use it at many times. Early Tues morning sees a big group, and believe me, at 5.30 - 6 am, it is chockers with cars. And they don't go at 80kmh, mostly it is faster.
    Obviously, cyclists have the rights to be there, but I have to agree with those who say they really should not. I've cycled mainly in the East and South for 15 years, and have never considered riding that route. It is just far too dangerous. And there are other routes that can get you down there, that are still busy, but less suicidal.
    What dismays me is the callous attitude of many commenters on social media and news sites showing scant care for seriously injured people ( who were doing something legally) and venting bile at the road users, rather than the system that puts them there. And before someone raises the canard of rego for bikes - I, like just about every cyclist pays in spades for roads through cars, motorbikes etc that sit at home while we ride our bikes. A rego plate won't make a fucktard pay attention and not run into other road users.
    The solutions are more complex.

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
  4. EatSleepDrinkRuck Larry Dwyer (12)

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    It really isn't that hard to include provision for separated Cycle paths to road design. It was included in a major road improvement project out the east side of Brisbane but our glorious leaders decided not to do it to save some cash.

    The problem is, saving that money will end up costing them in lives down the track.

    These poor guys injured in this accident can't be faulted and I'm not criticising their actions at all BUT: I know I choose my route based on avoiding traffic and finding hills. Commuting on the other hand, often doesn't give you a choice - and road design around the busy centres needs to protect cyclists from innatentive drivers.
    That said, I spend a lot of time on my bike shaking my head at morons on mid-life-crisis carbon who ride their bike the way they drive their BMaudi-benzes.
    boyo likes this.
  5. Hugh Jarse Rocky Elsom (76)

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    I recall a rather disturbing incident back in the early 80's, when driving south on the Hume (as it was then) just out of Mittagong.

    The precise details are a little sketchy faded by poor memory and the passage of time, but essentially a car had plowed into a group of about 20 motor cycle enthusiasts riding in 2 abreast convoy - possibly crossed the centre line and mowed the poor buggers down, head on.

    Long story short, I think there was 2 or 3 deaths and multiple very serious injuries. Helicopters, road closures, chaos and carnage everywhere.

    It is not just cyclists are vulverable. The fact that they (or the entire pelaton) are only going at 1/4-1/2 the speed of the cars, is not the major contributing factor.

    A > 1 tonne 4 wheeled vehicle will cause carnage everytime it hits a group of humans on unprotected 2 wheeled vehicles weighing in at 100kg (cycle & rider) or 200-300 kg(motorcycle & riders), regardless of the speed that the two wheeler is going.

    AFAIK, the motor cycles involved in the bingle in the 80's were all registered and roadworthy, the riders were all licenced, wearing AS compliant helmets and the majority were wearing heavy leather protective outer garments.

    As @Cyclopath has intimated, the solution is complex.

    I have ridden cycles on the open road, and in cities in several countries over many years (currently retired!) There is not much that scares me, and there is not much in life that I haven't tried or wouldn't give a try. Riding a cycle on a major open road, an urban motorway or major urban road where the 4 wheelers are thundering past at 70km/hr or more may be fun, environmentally responsible, and legal, but it is bloody crazy. I wouldn't do it unless the roads were closed, or there was a safety vehicle in front and behind the pelaton I was in with hazards on and signage displaing "Warning Cyclists Ahead", "Warning Cyclists Following".

    If cyclists want to assert their rights to be on the open roads in large groups, then the cost of asserting that right may perhaps be that they need to roster four individuals off for each ride to drive and be co-pilot/lookout in the safety cars in front of and behind the pelaton.

    Either that or stay off the main roads for your own safety.
  6. Scoey Tony Shaw (54)

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    The speed difference is one of the major contributors to accidents. The mass difference is the major contributors to the level of damage.
    boyo and Braveheart81 like this.
  7. BPC Phil Hardcastle (33)

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    Many lifetimes ago, in penance for some apparently major sins, I did some personal injury litigation. Very few cases were memorable, but one left an indelible impression.

    As Cyclopath can probably explain, a de-gloving injury in when the skin is basically torn off. It often happens to hands caught in machinery, hence the name.

    Anyway, in this particular incident, a chap stacked his motorcycle and was thrown forward into the handlebars. And suffered a degloving injury to his penis. It still brings a tear to my eye.

    Funnily enough I have never, ever been tempted to ride a motorcycle since reading the medical reports.

    I believe we could remove 90%+ of motorcyclists from the roads by showing them the photographs. It would make for an unusual safety campaign.
  8. Hugh Jarse Rocky Elsom (76)

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    ^^^^ Fingers down the blackboard. Eeeccch.
  9. AngrySeahorse Peter Sullivan (51)

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    Getting 90% of Motorbike riders off the road would be a rather useless safety campaign given we are rarely the ones responsible for the carnage that happens on the road. Car drivers should chuck in their cars for motorcycles, bicycles, their own feet, or heaven forbid PUBLIC TRANSPORT (mwah hahahahahahh!!!). A world with 90% of car drivers off the road..the very thought of that does things to me that I cannot describe on a public forum.

    I ride my Sportsbike 99.9% of the time (the other 0.01% is public transport & I don't own a car). I've seen plenty of horrid medical images of motorcycle accident injuries. I have relatives that have been seriously injured or killed on motorbikes - the worst being a great uncle who according to relatives was decapitated. None of this deterred me from getting my licence & I've had plenty of close calls over the years riding on the road. Put simply it is too fun & exhilarating, nothing else like it, & its a chick magnet (although that was not my primary reason for getting it...).

    RMS stats show that 90% of all road accidents are related to human error (only 2% related to the vehicle specifically or 3% to environmental factors). Little to do with the craft. Speaking of horrid genital injuries I refreshed my "working at heights" ticket today, they showed a picture of a guy with ruptured testicles, apparently he fitted the safety harness wrong. Ouch, good e.g. of human error over equipment failure in a non-road setting though.

    When it comes to bicycles my friends who cycle really do have my sympathies. How the hell they don't have PTSD from the number of close run in's with cars & trucks I don't know. At least with my Motorbike I have acceleration to escape some of the crazies. A mate of a mate who cycles regularly up at Maitland says he has lost 4 cycling mates to being hit by cars. Another cycling mate from Rugby ended up in hospital after a truck clipped her after Rugby training, she was very lucky. A lot of it simply comes from a combo of driver stupidity & lack of proper space/road planning by local government for bicycles.
  10. Inside Shoulder Nathan Sharpe (72)

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    Not quite right: when I cycle south I take a detour and stay off the Grand Parade - particularly sunday mornings - you can ride parallel to it and get over into Dolls Point at some lights.
    The detour involves the cycleway beside Qantas Drive - crossing the Alexandria Canal and ducking under the M5 next to Kogarah GC before winding around to near Bestic Street.
    I did not ever have the balls to ride the tunnel and so I scouted out how to get south other than on the freeway
    Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 7.54.38 pm.png
  11. Shiggins Paul McLean (56)

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    The next cyclist that rings his bell coming around a bend and doesn't slow down is getting smacked.
  12. Hugh Jarse Rocky Elsom (76)

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    ^^^ As subtle and appropriate as a southern Redneck wearing a white sheet to a Martin Luther King Rememberance Day rally.
    cyclopath likes this.
  13. Paradox Banned

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    Were the cyclists on the hard shoulder or actually in the same lane as traffic?
  14. Braveheart81 Rocky Elsom (76)

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    I believe a little bit of both.

    It was a group of 30+ cyclists.

    There used to be a really wide breakdown lane on the road but it was made dramatically narrower when they converted the road from two lanes to three some years ago.
  15. BPC Phil Hardcastle (33)

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    It would save the lives, and genitalia, of the riders forced off the road.

    Based purely on anecdotal experience from my purgatory in personal injury litigation, my impression that relatively minor incidents were more often the motorcyclist's fault but anything more serious than a broken bone was usually the fault of the driver of a car. Except for two memorable incidents, the unfortunate de-gloving and a speedster who came around a corner and plastered himself into the side of a grader.
  16. boyo Mark Ella (57)

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    I've seen and treated a de-gloved foot - not a pretty sight.
  17. matty_k Peter Johnson (47)

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    This is pretty impressive.


    If you are involved in a crash it will send GPS location to pre programmed contracts.
  18. Baldric Jim Clark (26)

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    Does anyone have any opinion on this product.
    It is a light that picks up vehicles from behind, gives you a visual indication and the light flashes with more intensity as the vehicle approaches.

  19. Tex Peter Johnson (47)

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    I can see how it would be useful, but personally I prefer regular head checks and some pre-emptive defensive riding.
  20. Hugh Jarse Rocky Elsom (76)

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    A 28 year old male from Caringbah appeared at Downing Local Court on today after pleading guilty to seven charges after his vehicle collided with seven cyclists on Southern Cross Drive at Eastlakes on March 16 this year.

    These are four counts of dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm and three of causing bodily harm by misconduct.

    He pleaded not guilty to a charge of negligent driving occasioning grievous bodily harm.

    The Driver will be committed for sentence at Sydney District Court on December 12.

    Read more:


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