cycling through busy traffic

Last week the 18 year old dumbass that ran over and killed Rob Jefferies was sentenced to a truly insulting 12 month, 200-hour community order, 18 month driving ban and a compulsory re-test.

How the fuck can killing someone because you are a complete and utter ignorant prick result in practically no punishment at all? A Community Order is not even a slap on the wrist; it is however another massive slap in the face for cyclists. Stories like this are becoming far too common, it seems that it’s perfectly fine to run cyclists over; the sentences are so measly that drivers could almost deliberately use us as skittles in the knowledge that they will get away with it.

The vast majority of us enjoy playing in traffic, there’s a huge amount of fun to be had racing cars and weaving in and out of lanes but is it maybe a bit too dangerous? The photo above by Chris Lanaway captures not only the excitement of our pastime but also perfectly illustrates just how small and vulnerable we are on the roads.

Every time we take to the streets we take our lives in our hands, we dice with death. Whether we’re riding foolishly in busy city traffic or sensibly along a less congested road like Rob Jefferies was is irrelevant, the fact remains that even a Smart Car can permanently put an end to our fun in the blink of an eye let alone a bus, a lorry or a dick in a silver Clio (it’s nearly always a dick in a silver Clio).

Do tragic stories like that of Rob Jefferies put you off riding though? Do they make you change the way you ride? They generally have very little impact on the way I ride because at the end of the day I know that cycling is extremely safe even when we ride like knobheads and regardless of the fact that we’re sharing the road with millions of potential murderers, manslaughterers and irresponsible kids that respect their G-Star RAW jeans more than our lives.

There is always a fine line between safe vs dangerous, we just never know when the scales are going to tip against us…