Sunday, February 10, 2013

Cycling Road Rage Bunch Cyclists react as One MUARC & Courier Mail Beach Road Bunch Cycling No Stopping Zones Community Safety

“While (cycling) bunches may be informally organised, they respond as a collective.

When they believe that a vehicle has passed intentionally too close or a car door is opened in the path of cyclists 

the reaction from the group may include yelling profanity and obscene gestures (Albert, 1999). 

It is possible that cyclists feel safe to confront a driver while in a group”  

Page 8, Cyclist Bunch Riding: A Review of the Literature (2009)

By Marilyn Johnson,
Jennie Oxley and Max Cameron

Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC)

Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) 2009

Motorist claims he was threatened by group of cyclists 

during road rage incident in Brisbane

Mervyn Hull
TRAFFIC DISPUTE: Mervyn Hull had a run-in with cyclists at West End. Picture: Glenn Barnes Source: The Courier-Mail
A WITNESS to the fiery encounter on Wednesday between a driver and cyclists in Brisbane has laid the blame squarely on the horn-happy motorist.
Greg Robson, who was riding on his own 75m behind the group of 20 cyclists, claims West End business owner Mervyn Hull's four-wheel-drive vehicle passed within millimetres of a rider's handlebars.
Mr Robson said he did not see the reported confrontation that later took place outside Mr Hull's panel beating workshop, but believed the inciting incident took place differently.
"Mr Hull did not toot his horn. He sat on it for about 200 metres," he said.
"My perception was he was using excessive speed in the circumstances, driving aggressively and in order to provoke."
Mr Robson said not all cyclists were angels but he did not see bad behaviour from the cyclists involved in the incident on Gladstone Road and Dornoch Terrace.
He said Mr Hull appeared to take his general frustration out on the group.
Mervyn Hull
TRAFFIC DISPUTE: Mervyn Hull had a run-in with cyclists at West End. Picture: Glenn Barnes
"It's like wrongly accusing a child for taking a lolly out of a lolly jar when the child had nothing to do with it," he said.
"That's what I believe the sense of frustration was."
Transport Minister Scott Emerson said the roads were "not a place for competition" and he urged both cyclists and motorists to obey the road rules.
"That's what you see sometimes of motorists out there, and cyclists. They see it as they're battling for some sort of territorial rights," said Mr Emerson, who regularly uses the Bicentennial bikeway.
He said he had not had any requests from organisations such as the RACQ or Bicycle Queensland to change the road rules governing cyclists.
"I think (being allowed to ride) two abreast is a sensible approach," he said.
"What is not sensible is when you see those road rules being broken. I can understand why people would get concerned about that."
The Minister said there was undoubtedly fault in both sides when it came to motorists and cyclists sharing the roads, and the government was doing all it could within its budgetary constraints to separate the road users.
"Road rage always concerns me whether it be motorists and motorists, motorists and cyclists or cyclists and motorists," said Mr Emerson.
"As a cyclist I've seen cyclists going too fast, being too aggressive.but then again I've seen motorists doing the same."
Earlier it was reported that a peaceful commute to work took a turn for the worse in Brisbane's West End, with a motorist claiming he was threatened and abused by a group of cyclists after going head-to-head for control of the roads.
West End business owner Mervyn Hull claims a group of irate cyclists turned up at his Montague Rd business making threats and yelling obscenities after a traffic dispute on a suburban road minutes earlier.
Mr Hull said he had tooted the group of cyclists with his car horn when they crossed into his lane on Dornoch Tce in Highgate Hill as he was on his way to work about 6.30am.
Arriving at his smash repair business, Mr Hull noticed the group of up to 20 cyclists close behind.
"I had given them a toot to move them into their proper lane," he said.
"The next minute, I pull up at work and here they come."
Mr Hull said the group, which he called the "Lycra boys", stopped across the road from his workshop and started making threats against him and his business. Ignoring the group's calls to come across the road, Mr Hull remained in his repair shop.
"The guys kept calling me names and yelling 'We're going to get you'," he said. "They told me they were going to destroy my business."
A group of employees at Mr Hull's business warned the cyclists to move on. The group left soon afterwards but Mr Hull said the threats continued.
"We've had four or five threatening phone calls this morning," he said.
Mr Hull said the battle with the two-wheeled commuters was ongoing, but he did not believe all cyclists posed problems. "There are good ones but we seem to get the bad ones around here," he said.
Cycling Queensland CEO Geoff Rynne agreed that interactions between cyclists and motorists were an ongoing problem but warned there were always two sides to every story.
"Almost every day there is an incident where a cyclist is injured," he said. "Our members encounter issues with cars and drivers who come too close, run them off the road and even throw things at them.
"Many cyclists prefer to travel in groups as there is high visibility and safety in numbers."
Mr Rynne said riders in groups were legally entitled to ride two abreast adding that the answer lies in an understanding and courtesy between road users.
Mr Rynne said traffic management systems would be discussed at the Asia-Pacific Cycle Congress on the Gold Coast in March.
A Queensland Police spokesman said they had received a complaint in regards to the incident and would continue routine patrols.
Mr Hull said he has now installed in-car cameras.
- additional reporting by Robyn Ironside

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