Club run abuse

by TheHatter   January 12, 2012  

Pretty much every outing now with my local club run seems to involve at least one instance of abuse shouted from a car, often accompanied by some threatening driving.
The groups we ride in are usually less than 10 and pretty well disciplined (though sometimes a little slower to 'single out' than I'd like).
So is this typical of other club runs?

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here in liverpool there are a lot of asshole drivers were on average i get cut up or pulled out on atleast 5 times a day just going to and from work when you complain about this with hand gestures they pull over and want a fight thats were a good bike torch /tactical strobe light will pay for its self and a heavey steel frame comes in handy why should we be the victim Angry

posted by the liverpool flyer [1 posts]
13th January 2012 - 15:45

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My main point on this is that club runs are normally on quiet country roads/lanes and only on Sunday mornings yet there is still so much impatience and anger.
Interesting I am in Herts in the SE and I agree that maybe what I'm experiencing is the London attittudes gradually creeping outwards from the capital.

It definitely doesn't seem so bad when I ride the same lanes on my own. Abuse then seems to be only from the usual suspects - youngsters in hot hatches, BMW's etc whereas club runs get abuse from all quarters including a little old lady on this last Sunday.

I can only think the distinction with a club run where we're typically two abreast is seen as illegal and arrogant behaviour when the truth is neither. As has been said above its normally much easier to overtake 8 riders two abreast than if they were singled out.

All in all a bit depressing - not sure theres any option other than maybe a move to France. Sad

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posted by TheHatter [810 posts]
13th January 2012 - 18:11

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Impatient Sunday morning drivers? - late for church, maybe? Wink

posted by youngoldbloke [71 posts]
13th January 2012 - 20:39

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MikeWall wrote:
Ridiculous post? Of course I want to be respected as a road user. As someone who just before Christmas was run off the road by an inattentive driver, breaking a collarbone, I've got recent first hand experience of bad driving.

No, no, I'm not angry with you, just with poor drivers. Perhaps I worded it wrong, sorry if you got furiously worked up or something.

I think that there are a few cyclists who bait motorists, but I'm sure that none of us are they.

I still maintain the claim that cyclists don't get annoyed when faced with 10 cars.

Why don't drivers get annoyed at motorbikers or mopedists, they are of similar shape and size. It just goes to show that the 'hate' directed towards us is completely random. Sick

Sir Velo

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posted by Raleigh [1728 posts]
13th January 2012 - 21:24

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the liverpool flyer wrote:
here in liverpool When you complain about this with hand gestures they pull over and want a fight thats were a good bike torch /tactical strobe light will pay for its self (

Don't know about in Liverpool, but the same kind of drivers in London are the ones who tend to carry axes in the side pocket of their car.

Best place to be is behind them, not under them

Sir Velo

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posted by Raleigh [1728 posts]
13th January 2012 - 21:26

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Havingmoved into Eaast Anglia from South London, I find motorists a lot more understanding, though inthe summer months when we get hordes of visitors the situatiion deteriorates. I have been honked at , sworn at told to ride in single file, when out solo on my trike- says a lot for their eyesigjht !!

Sián

posted by barogerl [26 posts]
13th January 2012 - 21:35

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I've not been out for a few months Blushing but I've never really had any problems out in Essex. The occasional bit of bad driving but next to no anti-cyclist anger/abuse. Perhaps I've been fortunate, but that said the group rides were usually on very quiet roads. Thought I should relay this as a positive experience!

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posted by OllyC [35 posts]
13th January 2012 - 22:39

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I think it makes little difference where you are. Though admittedly rural areas tend to be better than urban areas. It's only when the 'townies' venture beyond their domain that it becomes hairy. In general I have seen driving skills and courtesy get worse over the years fuelled by the resentment of a perceived 'war on the motorist'. I've even had situations where I've been cut up and the driver then slow down to a snails pace as if to illustrate a point of "see how it feels like to be held up". Others make a point of racing their engines while passing. I blame driving instructors for not teaching about vulnerable road users and the test for not marking the drivers response to peds and cyclists.

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posted by giff77 [1032 posts]
13th January 2012 - 23:38

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Goodness me someone can't do their maths. VED does not pay for the roads! Including the cost of road accidents, the amount of money spent repairing and building roads exceeds VED and fuel tax income and has done for years.

However, I would always try to react cheerfully to drivers being abusive even giving them a friendly wave.

Going by my past experience it's only a matter of time until a serious accident occurs during a cycling event and it would not surprise me if cyclists get the blame for driver's stupidity.

If cycling is indeed a sport of self-abuse why aren't more cyclists sectioned under the mental health act?

posted by hairyairey [275 posts]
14th January 2012 - 1:32

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Where I live in NZ we get regular and dangerous close drive by type harassment, and I know that on at least one occasion a shotgun has been pointed out of a car window at the bunch ride....a side effect of allowing 15 year old kids to drive Subaru Imprezas without insurance.

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posted by davecochrane [84 posts]
14th January 2012 - 4:00

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In my humble opinon it mainly arises from the unexamined knee jerk assumption that cyclists don't have much, if any, right to use the roads. When they see cyclists in a group there is a multiplication of the 'you've no right to be here' response: 'Bloody hell, there's more and more of them, how dare you get in my way, you don't even have the right to be here on my roads which I pay for and you don't...'
So often there's the assumption that cyclists are mere irritants to proper decent people with rights (i.e. motorists). As in the TV programme about Britain, the one with the lovely Julia Bradbury and that DIY geezer, where one of the top things that annoyed people in a vote was 'cyclists'. This assumes that the majority who have all the say are not cyclists, who have no voice. Who makes this dumb judgment? What about those who perceive that motorists are among the most annoying things in Britain?
What really gets to me is that they can't seem to see, and probably don't care about, how vulnerable you are on a bike compared to sat in the middle of your ton of metal. Driven by a big engine, hurtling by an inch away from your elbow, cutting into you. Then they complain that cyclists are a nuisance, or even scare them (is this what 'passive aggressive' means?).

posted by bikeylikey [160 posts]
14th January 2012 - 8:55

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I was once over-taken one sunday evening by a large 4x4 car, firstly it was literally inches away from my handel bars, also about 15 more mater up the road it stoped and pulled in to park by the roadside. Surprise

slightly more aerodynamic than a brick

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posted by HarveyMorcombe [48 posts]
14th January 2012 - 13:05

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hairyairey wrote:
Goodness me someone can't do their maths. VED does not pay for the roads! Including the cost of road accidents, the amount of money spent repairing and building roads exceeds VED and fuel tax income and has done for years.

The road budget is around 10 billion and the amount raised from fuel taxes is 27 billion plus 5 billion from VED.

It's spurious to include health care costs, unless you also attributed a benefit against it for the fact that people needing healthcare don't have to be carried on stretchers or horseback. In any event I doubt car crashes cost 20 billion in doctors bills.

Keeping it simple - and to the point of my comment - it is quite easy for motorists, journalists and the motoring lobby to say that they vastly overpay for the road network, which (pardon the pun) fuels their resentment.

And may I just point out the irony of responding with a personal insult in a thread about abuse of cyclists. I trust you'll get some karma when you're next on your bike.

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posted by abudhabiChris [494 posts]
14th January 2012 - 13:48

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If you ever cycle in Spain its an eye opener.If a cyclist is in an accident the law says the motorist is at fault.What happens is the drivers give way to cyclist and never come close when overtaking.You feel very safe the only time any cars get close is british drivers in hire cars or ex pats,its like car gets close o look english reg plates.The answer in Briton is to bring in the same law.Some chance!

big mick

posted by big mick [172 posts]
14th January 2012 - 21:48

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Hi All,
I cycled for a few days when working just outside Amsterdam in my spare time - Phew, what a difference... I couldnt believe car drivers give way on junctions for cyclists and you have your own lanes - proper. I have never ridden with such courtious drivers. I think we have a lot to learn from our European brothers (and sisters). Having said that, there were some strange bikes there and the one I hired was right 'Miss Marples' but a great time had.

Regards

Trikeman. Wink

Grunt, puff, pant and groan goes the old man - but he gets there in the end. ;o)

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posted by trikeman [348 posts]
14th January 2012 - 22:00

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Quote:
It's spurious to include health care costs, unless you also attributed a benefit against it for the fact that people needing healthcare don't have to be carried on stretchers or horseback. In any event I doubt car crashes cost 20 billion in doctors bills.

while i'd agree that it's entireley spurious to treat externalities in the manner that you have above, i'd suggest it's not spurious to add them to a well-researched report such as the one attached to this post.

The argument that a transport system wouldn't exist were it not for cars is the most spurious argument of all of them.

AttachmentSize
fairness_car_dependant.pdf 2.06 MB
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posted by Dave Atkinson [7231 posts]
14th January 2012 - 23:03

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I have given up being annoyed or even disbelieving.
It is not just cyclist. The number of T**** who passed me yesterday morning is crazy. I was in the car, on a stretch of road well known for der and boar crossings. It was dark and I felt that at 40ish I was going too fast to definitly stop if some thing walked out in front of me. Yet I ws passed time and time again ina 3 mile stretch by cars that then closed up behind another vehicle that blocked their daft driving for 3 or 4 miles. they gained a good 10 seconds. It is just that so many people want to rush. I have mates that go everywhere on the speed limit rather than the 10 below that I do. I pointed out once that their 25 mile commute was about 3 minutes longer than mine and a lot more expensive.Do they change? Nope.
I reckon the issue with club runs is that a group is hard to overtake as it strings out. A tractor at the same speed is short and also hard to kill. Many drivers are scared of their skill levels and over react. Many are just ill mannered tossers who should crash and burn.

posted by mattsccm [239 posts]
14th January 2012 - 23:06

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abudhabiChris wrote:

The road budget is around 10 billion and the amount raised from fuel taxes is 27 billion plus 5 billion from VED.

Does anyone have definitive figures on the income from fuel and vehicle tax versus road expenditure? The figures I've seen are 3.5bn income to the dvla and a 7bn budget for the highways agency, which maintains only the motorway and trunk routes. The remainder of the road network is maintained by the local authorities so presumably funded through council tax and whatever budget they are allocated from government .

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posted by joemmo [768 posts]
14th January 2012 - 23:22

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This is now the norm it would appear. I had an old boy in a nissan estate honking me whilst right on my back wheel up a single track lane into Fradley the other week. I stopped and asked him where he'd prefer I ride. "In the ditch for instance" to which he replied " I should get out of the effing way" !

Morons that would benefit from a slap I'm afraid !

What can you do?

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posted by Brummmie [56 posts]
14th January 2012 - 23:48

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Everything in that report supports what I said Dave.

That the amount of money spent on roads is vastly outweighed by the amounts raised from fuel tax and VED. In fact by a higher proportion.

There's a difference between costs, in the parlance of committees, and expenses.

Nobody actually spends 10 billion on the effects of noise for example, certainly not the government.

Where I would quibble is that they appear to have attributed many costs, but no benefits. You can't have one side of the scales being just the actual revenue amount, and the other side of the scale being the actual expenditure plus the hypothetical costs to society. It suits the barrow they are pushing I guess.

To return to the point I was making, the motorist sees a lot more money going out than is coming in.

Trying to convince upset drivers that they haven't taken into account the society cost of physical inactivity is not going to make a dent in their feeling of resentment.

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posted by abudhabiChris [494 posts]
15th January 2012 - 10:40

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Motorists are massively subsidised, they pay nothing like what they should do. Private motoring is a net drain on the economy. As an example of the war waged by the motorist, the revenue generated by car parking barely even covers the cost of pavement damage caused by motorists parking and driving on the pavement, that's before taking into account the cost of enforcement, revenue collection and the cost in injuries to pedestrians forced to use these facilities vandalised by the private motor vehicle owner. The space wasted on publicly subsidised car parking spaces could be put to better use as segregated bicycle and improving existing walking infrastructure which would reduce the "need" for on-street parking itself.

Just how true is this perception that motorists are so unfairly taxed?

Well in the financial year 2006-07 £28.43bn was raised from taxes on fuel and Vehicle Excise Duty (VED).

In the same year around £8.78bn went toward maintenance and £11.91bn new road building, but that is not the whole story.

The cost of policing the roads and the expense incurred by the judicial system has been estimated to be £3bn.

Also, the cost to the NHS of injuries due to road accidents crashes, according to figures from collated by RoSPA, was £9.93bn.

So the total cost to government was £33.62bn, meaning there was a short fall of £5.19bn, which had to be covered from other non-motoring related taxation.

In addition there is the cost to businesses and other drivers due to delays caused by congestion, estimated by those rampant greens, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), to be about £19.1bn.

Even this does not cover the whole cost of motoring to the nation as a whole, there are a large raft of hidden costs borne by all UK tax payers, these include -

* Noise pollution: in the form of lowered house prices, spoilt semi-natural areas, ill-health and disturbed sleep, estimated to cost £3.1bn

* Air pollution (not including CO2): estimated to be between £8.5 billion and £20.2 billion a year and this is likely to be an under-estimate! When looking at the costs associated with global warming, the figures are more difficult to pin down, but have the potential to dwarf our entire economic system. Transport contributes about 23% of UK domestic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and road transport is responsible for 93% of this.

* Water pollution: in the form of run-off into rivers and drainage of leaking oil, break fluid, exhaust and soot from vehicles, rubber particulates from tyres and salt used in winter. Again estimated costs are uncertain, but are somewhere between £1bn and £16bn per year.

* Costs to health due to lack of exercise: the British population is one of the fattest in Europe. The direct cost of obesity to the NHS is £0.5bn per year, the indirect health impacts of physical inactivity, estimated to be £10.7 billion per annum, and on top of that the indirect cost to the UK economy is at least £2bn per year.

* Insurance: Car insurance is a competitive business. Figures released by the Association of British Insurers show that the payouts to road users were not covered by their premiums. The average shortfall for the five years from 1988 to 1992 was £626 million per year. In other words, insurance companies are charging more on other kinds of insurance to subsidise motorists.

* The cost of repairing pavements damaged by illegal parking: this has been estimated to cost in the region of £234m a year and that does not include the cost of policing, installing bollards and other devices to stop vehicles parking illegally or the cost of compensation claims for trips and falls caused by this damage.

The simple inconvenient fact is that it is 18% cheaper to run a car now than twenty years ago.

This shows that “the motorist”, far from being unfairly taxed, is being heavily subsidised by the non-motoring tax payers.

So it is motorists that are the free loaders on Britain’s roads, not the long suffering cyclists and pedestrians.

posted by barryoz [3 posts]
15th January 2012 - 16:04

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Got one aggressive beep this morning out with a wee group of 4. Normally I'd of given them the finger but with this post in mind I gave them a prolonged cheery wave instead! Probably pissed them off even more Devil

Sq

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posted by Squiggle [414 posts]
15th January 2012 - 17:46

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I passed the same club run twice today - both times they were so disorganised that I expected abuse from the passing traffic. Some of them were all over the place, despite shouts from one of their number to single out They didn't receive any abuse, and rightly so, but after waiting for the cars to pass, I was nearly touching the white line to overtake them. Can't help sympathising a little if any drivers were frustrated by them.

If I could have, say, 6 bikes, would it stop me drooling over others that I don't have?

posted by notfastenough [2887 posts]
15th January 2012 - 18:52

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notfastenough wrote:
I passed the same club run twice today - both times they were so disorganised that I expected abuse from the passing traffic. Some of them were all over the place, despite shouts from one of their number to single out They didn't receive any abuse, and rightly so, but after waiting for the cars to pass, I was nearly touching the white line to overtake them. Can't help sympathising a little if any drivers were frustrated by them.

Good to get the other side of the argument and I'm sure there are lots of groups, club or otherwise, that are just too disorganised and almost impossible to pass. Maybe some sort of coaching qualification should be required to be a club run leader - at least that way you'd know you were doing all you could to be legal and considerate.

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posted by TheHatter [810 posts]
15th January 2012 - 22:36

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Excellent suggestion.

If I could have, say, 6 bikes, would it stop me drooling over others that I don't have?

posted by notfastenough [2887 posts]
15th January 2012 - 23:30

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I have never ridden in a group bigger than three myself, and I can't say I've ever experienced angry drivers myself where I live in Norway(though I know people who have)..

However, silly driving is not always the same as frustrated driving. I came up to a group of 15 odd riders or so one day and it was a complete nightmare to get past. Not becasue they were riding bad, but because there are so many twisting turns with no outlook I had nowhere to pass safely so after awhile I 'had' to get past and those ended up being somewhat dodgy moves, even though I meant no harm.

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posted by seabass89 [235 posts]
15th January 2012 - 23:56

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As a driver/cyclist/road user I get abuse daily and I won't speed up on a 30mph doing 33mph and tailgated -why should I get a ticket?

Cycling - well I don't get much abuse as I just ignore it.

I don't go training at peak times and if I am going up a steep hill and holding 5 cars up I usually wave them on or stop to let them through.

Car drivers-leave earlier.
Cyclists - ignore the prats.

I would say yes a helmet cam is a good idea.

What state of mind sane person would hurl abuse? nutters.

Stay positive and don't react to their behaviour - there is a reason for it but don't waste your life thinking about it and enjoy your ride.

Big Grin

I like my bike but it needs a hidden 25cc motor Smile

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posted by Fish_n_Chips [325 posts]
16th January 2012 - 19:23

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I've ridden lots in Scotland, Ireland and England.

Scotland - stay away from the crappy areas and you'll be OK. General standards are good, just the usual share of Corsa driving baseball cap wearing nutters in crappy areas.
Ireland - Never ever had, or even seen, a road rage incident despite living there for 3 years and driving extensively all over the island.
England - Had more bother there than anywhere else, drivers buzzing past too close, basically the attitude is get past the cyclist at all costs. Pleased to say that I rode in London for the first time in years last month, and the massive amount of cyclists on the road is a big help.

I used to get really wound up by drivers that basically were rude, ignorant and unsafe. Now instead I try and plan my rides to be on quiet roads or at quiet times (or both!) I tend to ride alone mostly, the sunday morning group is OK as we usually only have between 6 and 8 and we stick to quiet roads in Fife/Tayside area.

posted by buzz [3 posts]
16th January 2012 - 20:30

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Fish_n_Chips wrote:

Stay positive and don't react to their behaviour - there is a reason for it but don't waste your life thinking about it and enjoy your ride.

Big Grin

Very good advice and an attitude I try to follow but been finding it increasingly difficult!

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posted by TheHatter [810 posts]
16th January 2012 - 20:51

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joemmo wrote:
abudhabiChris wrote:

The road budget is around 10 billion and the amount raised from fuel taxes is 27 billion plus 5 billion from VED.

Does anyone have definitive figures on the income from fuel and vehicle tax versus road expenditure? The figures I've seen are 3.5bn income to the dvla and a 7bn budget for the highways agency, which maintains only the motorway and trunk routes. The remainder of the road network is maintained by the local authorities so presumably funded through council tax and whatever budget they are allocated from government .

5.63bn from VED last year

read this for transport infrastructure spending page31--

http://www.ifs.org.uk/bns/bn43.pdf

Don't forget fuel duty.

posted by wyadvd [116 posts]
18th January 2012 - 22:19

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