Given the evidence indicates in car v bike crashes the car driver is at fault in around 80% of cases and the purpose of "Operation Safe Cycling" is to improve cyclist safety then if SAPOL talk to 5 people one is a cyclist and four are drivers.

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At least the traffic superintendent in charge urged mutual respect in sharing the road and noted that they would be on the lookout for close passing and parking in bike lanes as well as ensuring cyclists obey signals.

I was cringing yesterday listening to ABC local radio when some muppet rang in with an anecdotal rant about clumps of cyclists blocking the road and calling for them to be "bulldozed". Peter Goers shut him down about the inappropriate comment but then proceeded to rave on negatively for quite some time about cyclists, from riding abreast to the delightful registration topic. I quite enjoy listening to Goers but I was annoyed at this blinkered, one sided editorial.

I'd love to take some anti-cyclists for a ride on some of the roads I have to use so that they can see how terrifying it is being in the vulnerable position when motorists don't obey the law.

Or Operation Safe Driving. The car driver has been charged with driving without due care.

Back on topic, I think the point of "Operation Safe Cycling" was to target both drivers and riders to make it safe for cyclists. The press release did mention drivers but was still a little unbalanced. An obvious way to balance it out would have been to mention the passing distance law.

There's a follow-up SAPOL press release "Operation Safe Cycling - Results" , on offences detected from 6 to 21 Jan.

* 25 driver offences (I assume this is only those related to cyclists)

* 597 cycling offences (241 fines, 356 cautions). Breakdown is 326 for no helmet, 155 for no lights at night, 61 for using a mobile phone. By my maths that means all others offences total 55.

They say they focused on both driver and cyclist behaviour, but the difference in numbers is stark. I wonder whether this is because certain offences are easier to detect. Personally I doubt that the the number (the number, not just the proportion) of cyclists using their mobiles outnumbers drivers using their mobiles. (Unless drivers using mobiles are counted in a different way - a report last year said they issued 5854 fines in the previous year (about 16  day) for using a mobile while driving).


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