|sent from: London, UK. destination: Petaluma, California, USA|
As someone with a stake in the current cycling-in-London debate following a number of deaths and injuries in the last 2 weeks, I feel compelled to speak up. What’s my stake? Merely life and limb.
The troubles with cycling in a place as crowded as London are felt most acutely when cyclists and pedestrians meet messily at intersections, junctions or crossings, but the real dangers are much, much larger; the HGVs, the vans, the buses. Cyclists have reacted angrily to public officials putting the onus on them, but as the person most likely to lose in any encounter I think it is on us to minimise our exposure to dangers.
The notion that cyclists can safely share major roadways with all other traffic is wrong, compounded by misguided public policy with the Mayor’s “Blue Stripes of Death” aka The Cycling Superhighways. There are tons of alternate routes across London on quieter roads where you will not encounter the larger vehicles, all you have to do is tolerate adding a couple of minutes to your journey time.
I know that doesn’t sit right with the two-wheeled warriors who insist on living each moment like it is their last, but let’s face it, London’s best bits are all tucked away in the side streets.