cfsmtb in low earth orbit

Monday, April 24, 2006

Tips for beginner commuters

She came from Planet ClaireShe came from Planet Claire

As petrols *tipping point* of $1.40+ litre looms, I have been wondering about a list that could be quickly reeled off as advice for those starting to commute to work. So I've kicked off yet another
aus.bicycle thread to garner responses from the peanut gallery usual suspects.

Either a top five or even a top ten. I thought about behaviour including being predictable, assertive etc. But as one rather aggressive cyclist in Thornbury on Saturday arvo illustrated to me, (and everyone else watching), being assertive and not knowing any basic road skills certainly isn't a good look. Neither is it good public relations for cycling.

- You are legally a road vehicle;
- Behave in a predictable way, ie: hold your line while in traffic;
- Keep at least one meter from parked cars, don't be forced into the gutter;
- Follow all traffic signals & stop for red lights, including ped lights;
- Keep a reasonable speed on shared offroad bikepaths, stick to the left, slow on all corners and say "passing" when indeed passing another path user;
- Curb your aggression, be polite, acknowledge other road users;
- Switch your lights on at dusk. If you haven't front & rear lights, get them promptly;
- Get appropriate cycling clothes/rain jacket and footwear. It may look funny to you but it's been designed for cycling. Saves your work clothes, and if you commute a shorter distance you can wear what you want.
- Wear a helmet, on your head, not on the handlebars. It's the law and internerd h*lm*t arguments are useless when you're about to be fined by the police.
- Be nice. Or something that approaches that form of behaviour for you.

Ok I'm rambling and haven't had a coffee yet. All contributions welcome except for boxtards. All I'm thinking of is a nifty list that we can all easier use at the lights & at work for newbies.

Blessing of the Bicycles
We're On A Mission From God

Despite not being terribly religious-y, a local ecumenical service similar to Good Samaritan Hospital’s Blessing of the Bicycles in Los Angeles would be absolutely divine. Does anyone know of a friendly pastor or church who could be interested in holding a event like this? Shall be doing some enquiries.

Here's an intriguing poll from Eric Brittons New Mobility blog: New Mobility Citizen Poll for Your City– A Proposal for Discussion. And a not so cheery article on our species continued deathwish .. Driven to destruction

Car design and road conditions are not the main causes of traffic deaths and horrific injuries. It is our thinking that needs to change.


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