Sunday, February 17, 2013

Cycling Road Rage Lycra Louts a Law unto themselves Herald Sun Rule of Law Due Process Equal Application of the Law Rule of Law IS One Size Fits All Respect of One Person for Another










 



"My own bike is now gathering cobwebs 

after too many ugly incidents of road rage - 

not from drivers, but from the lycra louts who think they own the roads."


"While the cycling lobby is strong, http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/good-reason-to-worry-about-our-democracy-20111204-1oddk.html

community resentment about lycra louts is also steadily growing."

 













"A cyclist literally has to kill someone before they get charged with anything." 

"A first conviction for killing say, a pedestrian,

attracts a maximum penalty of just four months' prison 

and a possible fine of roughly $4500 - what some cyclists pay for their bikes."










"The aggressive element that is wrecking our cycling culture

needs to be brought into line and if public outrage won't do it, 

then the only alternative is to consider licensing and registration."



"Rule of law, equal application of the law, due process, respect of one person for another are necessary for a peaceful productive society" 


Malcolm Fraser
 






Lycra louts a law unto themselves



AS Lord of the Lycra Tony Abbott springs back on his bike for a nine-day ride for charity (and cameras) it's time to question the rights and responsibilities attached to our growing cycling culture.
Tony Abbott
FEDERAL OPPOSITION LEADER TONY ABBOTT TAKES TO THE BIKE AT THE IRONMAN AUSTRALIA EVENT IN PORT MACQUARIE. PICTURE: NATHAN EDWARDS THE DAILY TELEGRAPH
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The Victorian Employers Chamber of Commerce and Industry is running a poll asking Melburnians if cyclists should be licensed to ride on public roads and whether bikes should be registered.
The suggestions have merit.
Choosing your bike over your car has obvious benefits for both cyclists and the environment, but the unregulated growth in cycling is causing havoc on our roads and footpaths.
Victoria's cycling strategy has many good points, like the development of bike trails, but while recreational cycling is improving, daily commuting by bike is becoming a nightmare.
In a few months we'll have another Ride to Work day, which is designed to encourage workers to "feel good and have fun" by commuting to work by bike. Fun? It's better fun going to the dentist than trying to get into the city by bike.
Organisations such as Bicycle Victoria have been at the forefront of trying to improve driver awareness of cyclists, but one of the major challenges they face is changing the culture of cycling itself. What started off as a healthy form of transport has morphed into an unhealthy culture of arrogance, self-righteousness and competition.
My own bike is now gathering cobwebs after too many ugly incidents of road rage - not from drivers, but from the lycra louts who think they own the roads. You can be trundling along minding your own business and the next thing a shrieking maniac on two wheels swoops down upon you like an eagle taking out a sparrow.
Too many cyclists seem to think they don't have to stop at red lights or while trams are letting passengers on and off - and the speed some go at is extraordinary.
Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton was rightly charged when he took his fancy car out for a bit of public hooning.
But when are lycra louts going to learn that living out their Tour de France fantasies on metropolitan roads isn't on? One survey of 686 cyclists found the majority knowingly break road laws such as running red lights.
A cyclist literally has to kill someone before they get charged with anything. The cyclist who in 2006 killed 77-year-old pedestrian James Gould, for example, was charged only with running a red light and fined $400.
The Victorian Government has moved to extend dangerous and careless driving rules to cover bike riders as well as drivers, but the rules are still murky. Cyclists, for example, will not be able to ride at a speed or in a manner that is dangerous to the public - but what constitutes dangerous riding has not yet been determined. It'd be a fair bet that the ordinary person and your average lycra lout would disagree.
Nor are the new laws particularly punitive. A first conviction for killing say, a pedestrian, attracts a maximum penalty of just four months' prison and a possible fine of roughly $4500 - what some cyclists pay for their bikes.
While the cycling lobby is strong, community resentment about lycra louts is also steadily growing. I sure felt some fury over Easter when the lane-blocking louts were out in force. Why are cyclists allowed to ride three abreast and hold up other traffic? The aggressive element that is wrecking our cycling culture needs to be brought into line and if public outrage won't do it, then the only alternative is to consider licensing and registration.

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