Drivers pose bigger threat than cyclists

First published in Letters

Sir – I note that the local police have announced another clampdown on cyclists who cycle on pavements (last week’s Witney Gazette).

I, of course, applaud the police’s efforts to protect members of the public and I acknowledge that some cyclists do cause distress and, sometimes, injury.

Indeed, I recall a few years ago one of your regular correspondents suffering at the wheels of a pavement cyclist in Minster Lovell.

However, what I take issue with is the suggestion that this is something of an epidemic, as suggested by Sergeant Leanne Phillips in the Blue Line column.

I would have liked to have seen an acknowledgement that this is the behaviour of a small minority and that the majority of cyclists are law-abiding.

The problem with articles like Sergeant Phillips’s is that they reinforce the views of those motorists who have a negative attitude towards cyclists, another small but dangerous minority.

She states that about 20 pedestrians are seriously injured across the UK every year by cyclists. Compare this with nearly 6,000 pedestrians who are killed or seriously injured every year by motorists.

Your readers are 300 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured by a motorist than injured by a cyclist, so why do the police single out cyclists?

Apart from drink-drivers at Christmas, I cannot recall the local police ever publicising any initiatives to reduce dangerous driving.

Can we now look forward to them announcing a clampdown on dangerous motorists, for example motorists driving while using a mobile phone?

After all, if you walk around Witney, you will see many more drivers using mobile phones than pavement cyclists.

Tim Walker

The Leys

Witney

Comments (1)

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1:53pm Fri 6 Jun 14

jerrych says...

Having just read Mr. Walkers letter about cyclists and motorists I would just like to say that my elderly mother has twice recently been nearly runover by cyclists on pavements. However, I also agree about idiotic motorists driving too fast in the town centre and would be the first to campaign for a 20mph speed limit in the town and more pedestrian cossings. An ignorant motorists recently blasted the horn at her whilst using the Zebra crossing at Argos and I have personally helped several elderly ladies cross by the public toilets where many motorists speed up and down to and from the High Street. Having lived in Witney for over 2 years I think it's is a lovely town but unfortunately there are some stupid and ignorant people who just don't care about others and I would support all measures to deter their inconsiderate and dangerous actions.
Having just read Mr. Walkers letter about cyclists and motorists I would just like to say that my elderly mother has twice recently been nearly runover by cyclists on pavements. However, I also agree about idiotic motorists driving too fast in the town centre and would be the first to campaign for a 20mph speed limit in the town and more pedestrian cossings. An ignorant motorists recently blasted the horn at her whilst using the Zebra crossing at Argos and I have personally helped several elderly ladies cross by the public toilets where many motorists speed up and down to and from the High Street. Having lived in Witney for over 2 years I think it's is a lovely town but unfortunately there are some stupid and ignorant people who just don't care about others and I would support all measures to deter their inconsiderate and dangerous actions. jerrych
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