A short note on the news report on BBC Breakfast today about rural cycling. Good stuff from the Sustrans chap (decent quality segregated rural cycle routes are a good thing - but with respect guys, that one in Cambridge is rather more in the suburbs than the countryside), not such good stuff from the journalists.
Not an alltogether bad report, but as is so often the case in news from a network run BY motorists, FOR motorists, it shied away from the bleeding obvious - cyclists going about their reasonable, legal business on rural roads are being mowed down in increasing numbers by motorists who are irresponsibly and illegally going too fast.
And its that simple. The highway code is a simple enough document containing the excellent rule telling us to drive as such a speed such that we can stop in the distance we can see - you can be driving under the speed limit and STILL be going too fast to be driving legally. Thats a key requirement especially on hedge lined rural roads where there could be a stray sheep, a deer, a fallen tree etc. around every corner. Its good advice, and if you ignore it and hit something that you ought to have missed then its your own fault. If its a pedestrian or a cyclist that'll make you a killer.
And yet we've got an article on the dangers of rural cycling (which is for the most part motorists driving so fast they can't miss you, driving with an illegal lack of regard for the safety of others) which completely failed to address this key point.
So, once again the BBC pay lip-service to cycle safety without at any point addressing the key problem. Whats killing ever more cyclists in the UK is dangerous drivers. Lets not over complicate things. Lets not dodge the problem. Lets tackle it.