Dangerous Cycling – The Nightriders of Hastings

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Above:  David Hasselhoff and his KITT cycle.  David is asking cyclists in Hastings to stop their dangerous cycling, fit lights or get Hoff their cycles after dark.  Thanks Dave!

 

I feel like I’m going mad.  Am I the only person who is noticing this?  I’m talking about the sharp increase in the number of cyclists who are riding after dark without lights.  Yes, cycling without lights.  After dark.  Both on the road and on pavements.  Why is no-one doing anything?  Why are the police driving past these cyclists without stopping them?

I’m afraid my phone camera is not really up to the challenge of night-shots so please excuse the poor quality images.

Above:  Our theme.  Dangerous night time cycling.  He is about to cross the road using the pedestrian crossing without warning.

 

You won’t find the pro-cycling groups talking about this.  They’re certainly campaigning for more safe zones for cyclists but part of what makes the roads unsafe is the complete lack of awareness of what makes for safe cycling.  I’ll have to post on that.  The way people use the roads is horrific.  Talking to school age children has revealed that none of them has undergone cycle training.  It wasn’t even offered!

In the course of my enquiries, I discovered that the secretary of my property management company had a close encounter (third paragraph down) with a cyclist without lights.

Lest you read this and think I am the Anti-Cyclist, know that I am a cyclist who currently can’t cycle.  And a pedestrian.  I am also ill and have been hit hard by cyclists a number of times.  Cyclists without lights is troublesome for me as a pedestrian, more so as an ill one.  It makes cyclists so much harder to see when they are on the pavements and they are increasingly on the pavements.

Continue reading “Dangerous Cycling – The Nightriders of Hastings”

A visit to Hastings Community Contact Centre highlights the problem of anti-social cycling

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Above:  Hastings Community Contact Centre.  First stop when looking for help.

Shortly after my second cycle collision, I went seeking advice at Hastings Community Contact Centre to find out who could help me.  After a short wait, I was told to go and sit at one of the counters to talk with an adviser.  I ended up having a very nice discussion and it was most interesting to find that the adviser had herself been hit by a bike.  She told me that she was aware of the problem (encountering it head on, as it were) and she gave me the name of Rob Woods at Hastings Town Centre Management.  She informed me that many people have complained about the issue but nothing is ever done and so she did not hold out much hope for me getting anywhere and yet it was worth a go.

Talking for any length of time is quite difficult for me so I came away pleased that I had managed to stay on track and wasn’t unduly tired.  I had a name, even if the address on file was wrong (which I was to discover).

The next day I made a phone call to the managing agent of my property and, as the subject matter was nuisance neighbours and antisocial actions, I ended up having a fairly lengthy discussion with the secretary.  I mentioned my two crashes with cyclists and the skateboarder in Priory Meadow.  I mentioned having lots of trouble on the fairly recently extended Hastings and Bexhill waterfront cycle lane, to the degree that using the promenade during the summer is too much effort.  And that, though I used to enjoy a stroll in the dark during the winter, the promenade wasn’t safe now due to cyclists without lights and that I’d had enough close calls to give up walking it, unless it was extra cold or blowy – in which case, no cyclists!

The secretary then told me that as part of the team who put on Beatles day, she had been coming off the Pier at night and had a close call with a cyclist.  She said that she completely understood where I was coming from, as it was exceedingly dark in places and the cyclist in question was not using lights so she had no idea he was coming.  From the close call she had, neither had he been aware of her.

 

A bike outside the Community Contact Centre highlights the nuisance cyclist problem in Hastings Town Centre

 

A day or two later, I met my dad in town.  I’d been in the Community Contact Centre (side of the Town Hall) trying to get a correct address for the town centre management.  I remember coming out, seeing my dad and as we walked towards each other, a cyclist whizzed in front of us.  Yes, in the no-cycling, no signs (at the time!), Priory Meadow.

I looked at my dad, my face ripe with disdain.  I probably extended some expletives (about the cyclist) and then proceeded to tell him about my visit to the Town Hall and my conversation on the phone.

…so that’s one skateboard in the ankle and two bikes hits and some close calls.  I’ve seen two small children in the last 2 months almost have their faces smash into bike tyres.  No word of a lie, no exaggeration – one incident, outside Jempson’s, there can’t have been more than 2 inches between the girl and the tyre.  She was only 4 or 5.  The other girl was more 4 than 5.  She was trying to hold her younger brother who was straining to pull away.  It was near Costa, on that darkened paving that cyclists seem to think is for cycling.  Younger brother pulled – she was yanked in front of an oncoming bike going what you’d think was a reasonable speed but given the distance between her wheel and the child, wasn’t.  6 inches max, between her and the front tyre.  And amazingly, no apology from the woman on her bike and the mum apologises to the woman and has a go at her daughter.  Like outside Jempson’s.  Cyclist looked ashamed but then realised they were getting of the hook because the parent had a go at the child and apologised.  What is wrong with people!

So anyway, that’s one skateboard in the ankle and two bikes hits and some close calls.  I’ve seen two small children in the last 2 months almost have their faces smash into bike tyres.  Then I go into the town hall to…and the adviser has been cycled into.  And the secretary at the property management company..works at Beatles day..close call..etc.’

‘I know someone to’, says my dad.  A friend of his.

What is going on here?  And why will no-one do anything?

Antisocial Cycling in Hastings – I’m injured by a cyclist again.

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Above:  Scene of the crime, part 3 – Antisocial cycling in Queens Road, Hastings.  I was taking a photo of the cyclist you can hopefully see on the pavement ahead.  The foreground is exactly where I was hit again.

Hello all,

If your reading this in any kind of order then guess what…Yep, I got hit again.

For those who are reading out of order, here’s part 1: click this writing!

So yep, I was hit again towards the end of 2015.  A cyclist on a mountain bike collided with me, opposite the bus stop by Morrison’s (on Morrison’s side).  He was too quick for me.  I could see him coming from a distance and thought I’d given him enough room but as he got closer, I realised he was going to collide with me.  He made no attempt to slow down and thus the cycle-tango ensued, my dance partner flubbing his role and leaving me to take the full weight of his body and bike.

The usual angry, articulations ensued from this dangerous, speeding pavement cycler and continued as he rode off.  The usual badly in pain, limping home, 3 weeks of recovery all over again.

But remember…the perception of the risk (#) is far greater than the risk of collision itself.

(#) of being hit by a bike.  Source: Hastings Observer

Continue reading “Antisocial Cycling in Hastings – I’m injured by a cyclist again.”