I’d like to call this intent to assault with a motor vehicle, but I’m not sure if that’s a real law although it sounds much more accurate.
This is now the second serious incident of someone attempting to knock me off my bike and cause me physical harm, and what’s more worrying is that this took place just at the end of the street where I live, and my estate is all no-through roads.
This morning at around 8:15am I took my bike out of the lockup, cycled along my street and turned left onto the street leaving the estate. This street is always lined on one side with parked vehicles and means everyone is restricted to one lane.
As I turned round the road was clear and I started cycling forward, after about three cars I saw a vehicle appear at the opposite end of the restricted road without waiting for me to come past. I shook my head, about the only thing you can do as a cyclist, and continued on.
I realised that the vehicle wasn’t going to pull in anywhere as it was accelerating forward, so I started to pull in to a gap, as the car came close the driver jerked the wheel to his right and headed straight for me. I obviously thought he was going to hit me so I had to unclip my shoes from the pedals and try to get out of his way, at the last moment he turned back and drove on, leaving me struggling to stay upright.
Two vehicles left from around me, both drivers looking very concerned but neither doing anything or even stopping. I waited to get myself together then went searching for the car, I found it a street away from where I live and the driver got out of the car. He wore a shell suit. He immediately begin shouting aggressively at me,
Want to say something to me? No, of course I didn’t I merely told him I was taking his number.
You had plenty of f***ing space was another of his aggressive shouts. Actually I didn’t, we were reduced to a single lane and he expected me to move out of the way even though I had right of way. Once he finished shouting and rustling his shell suit I took the vehicle number and left. One of his neighbours looked at me with an apologetic face, perhaps she has also encountered his wrath.
So tonight I will return and take a picture of the small red car with registration SN055 KKR or KRR and post it up here. I fear that this may not be his main vehicle as it had “Bodyworks” written all over the side, perhaps he’s just been in another accident.
I may also report him to the Police, but my last attempt at reporting someone who drove me off the road has resulted in no contact back from the Police (Captor Number: VA01016605, Date: 14/11/2005). No wonder, they are more interested in telling cyclists how to protect themselves and follow the law rather than prosecute those who attempt to knock them off their bikes.
That BBC article solely highlights bad cyclists, and not the dangers that the average cyclist is facing on the road day to day, nor do they seem interested in genuine incidents that have threatened the lives of cyclists. I do not exaggerate when I say that there’s at least one incident every day that could have knocked me off my bike if I wasn’t such an experienced cyclist, and there’s over five incidents per day that occur that give me a bit of a surprise, again if I wasn’t an experienced cyclist I’m sure I’d be off my bike much more.
In a time where environmentally friendly transport is being touted more and more, and the Government is telling us to turn to greener types of travel, why aren’t they protecting the safety of cyclists? Making it safer and easier for us to travel? Despite my experience I am seriously thinking of returning to my car for commuting, it’s far safer.