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Thursday, 17 November 2011

CYCLE SUPERHIGHWAYS & (UN)ETHICAL SPONSOR

Cycle Superhighway. Let's dwell on the name. Highway is a public road... Super implies bigger, wider, with extra powers. You almost hope when you ride on them that a special force will propel you to your destination in no time and in safety, like in a scene from Tron, zooming around these Super lanes barely seen by the slow traffic around you.

It gives more room than conventional cycle lanes, but apart from being able to overtake slower cyclists it has no great impact on safety.
Vehicles still drive over it, turn left through them without first checking, they are slippery in the wet as most of the lanes are simply painted.

There have been two deaths last week on the Superhighway and I have witnessed many more accidents.
Unless they are guarded they have no real point in existing, giving false sense of safety to many more cyclists, only to let them down when it matters. We need cycle lane cameras and maybe cycling awareness to be included in the highway code.

They are sponsored by a well known bank, Barclays. That is uncomfortable as banks have been responsible for most of our economic woes. Also the biggest British cycling team is sponsored by Sky, responsible for  the phone hacking scandal engulfing British press. Why is cycling attracting these companies? I enjoyed the Sky Ride in London and welcomed the initiatives sponsored around the country, but I would prefer clean and ethical companies getting in the frame. Odd as cycling exudes a certain lifestyle, a healthier, cleaner mode of transport.
Perhaps the obstinacy of many cyclists to defy the highway code, jumping lights etc, together with the too eagerly reported doping cases, are factors that keep away ethical companies.

Let's all respect the roads, after all cyclists are drivers and drivers are cyclists.

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