Today I would like to divert away from my usual patter about public transport. Though I should mention that Metro newspaper (front page today), you don’t need a study to tell you that the trains are overcrowded, you never get a seat and that it will only get much worse. We know.
And focus on the other forms of transport. Those with two or more wheels that are not cars.
Bikes on the road are like a protected species. I get why this is as they offer many benefits. These include the fact that due to traffic you can sometimes (actually a lot of the time) get to a place faster than on car or on public transport. They are also pollution free, so good for the environment, which in turn is good for everyone. They are low cost. You can often get money for the purchase of your bike through work. And if not you can ride a Boris bike or the like.
But I find some cyclist just plain rude. Being a protected species I find that they sometimes attack but have this ultra thick shield around them so if you get the chance to return their force before they ride off into the sunset, it is a loosing battle. When it is them against us pedestrians, they always manage to emerge the unsung victors.
I have had a cyclist ride past on a green man and almost knock me over? Why is this allowed to happen? The sad thing is that since there is no way to catch them (no such thing as a bike license plate), they just get away with it.
I admit there have been times (not many) when I have crossed a road without the proper due care and attention and a bike has almost knocked me over and shouted. I know that when this happens it is my fault and because of this, I don’t exactly blame them, but if cars have to have special vigilance for bikes, why do bikes not have to extend the same courtesy to pedestrians? Maybe I should start walking around with a camera on top of my head catching unruly cyclists.
And then there are the bikes with the carriages at the back which I can describe in one word: LOUD.
They have become part of central London from Thursday night. I am honestly quite impressed that they are still out there, I had thought it would be a passing phenomena. But the noise pollution is a bit of a joke.
Because no two bike carriages are the same or have the same music, when they are bunched together it is like a grand concert featuring a bad orchestra. Some of the music is ok though, but is it clearly not to everyone’s taste. Now you can’t please everyone, but what is wrong with it being a more personal experience for those who want to go onto their carriage?
Scooters and segways
And then you have the scooters, which I find to be quite effective. But I cannot decide, are they supposed to be on the road? Or on the pavement? I’m not talking about the ones ridden by little kids, I think under a certain age you should be on the pavement. But the ones ridden by grown men and woman, what is the deal with them? Who decides where they have to go?
And same applies to the new Segway boards fad. I am told that they can go pretty fast, though I have luckily only seen them (in person) being driven (if that is the word) at the speed of walking.
Personally, I cannot see the point in them. They seem dangerous (too many Instagram videos of people falling off), but I can appreciate they can be fun. My question is, who decides if they are road or pavement worthy?
My main issue I suppose, is that with all these new / old transportation apparatus, who decides the rules of the road/pavement for these non road tax, non pavement walking vehicles?
And shouldn’t more consideration be given to us pedestrians…