Police in Edinburgh are investigating an incident in which a cyclist was injured when he was thrown from his bike after riding into a potentially lethal clothes line positioned at head height across a busy cycle path.
The rider, believed to be aged in his early 50s, sustained cuts on his cheek and nose, leaving him "bleeding and dazed" following the incident at around 7pm yesterday evening, reports STV.
It took place on the Roseburn path behind the Davidsons Mains branch of Tesco in the northwest of the city.
The broadcaster says that logs and branches had been placed on the path, possibly to distract riders’ vision as the approached the wire.
A 27-year-old female cyclist had to brake to avoid a second trap nearby, placed at a lower level, and managed to escape injury.
The woman, who did not wish to be named, said: “I saw the low level one and skidded to a stop. I had a look around and wondered what the hell was going on.
“I got off my bike to take it down and was looking at the knots when I caught a glimpse of the man who had come off.
“I shouted out to him to see if he was OK and walked over. He had lost his glasses and was quite dazed and confused.
“He said he was cycling and saw the logs. Then he saw the rope at the last second and turned his head before it got him. He had a nasty cut on his nose and his cheek where he struck the rope.
“As we were taking them down, both of us were wondering if there was anyone watching us. It was a little horrifying to be honest.”
The woman, who said she would not be deterred from cycling but would be “very cautious,” reported the incident to police, who have said that they are investigating.
Her boyfriend, Alex Robertson, told STV that the perpetrators had committed
“the equivalent of attempted murder”.
He continued: “They are putting up something that could easily kill someone. It’s shocking.
“The man was bleeding and clearly shaken up by it. I imagine he’s been put off cycling and that’s on a path where they’re meant to be safe.
“I’m pretty angry at whoever’s done this. If my girlfriend hadn’t stopped in time, she would have gone flying and who knows the damage it could have caused.
“I remember something similar happening at the Meadows a couple of years ago. A guy had to undergo reconstructive surgery because it caused so much damage to his face.”
Ian Maxwell from the Lothian cycle campaign group, Spokes, commented: “This is a horrible incident. Similar things have happened on the path network before and the police have targeted the relevant area.”
He added: “The busier the paths are the less likely it is to happen.”
In December 2011, we reported how a cyclist using the Bristol-Bath Railway Path had been rendered unconscious and his bike stolen after he was brought down by a clothes line strung across the route.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.