Yesterday on route to Nottingham city centre in our car we saw, well I saw in the loosest terms possible, a cyclist weaving along the middle of a busy main road on his bike. He was dressed all in black, no helmet (unless you count his baseball cap), no reflectors and no lights, so what’s wrong with this you may be thinking, cyclists have a right to be on the roads too. I agree, but this was at 6.30pm at night! Luckily both my husband , who was driving, and I spotted the cyclist in plenty of time and my husband slowed our car due to the cyclists erratic manoeuvring, and also as he was unsure which direction the cyclist would be taking at the approaching crossroads. Thankfully, for us, he went straight ahead as we turned left, but that started a conversation about driving at night.
With the clock going back recently, the majority of drivers finishing work at the end of the working day (or indeed fetching their children from school) are driving in darkening conditions. Part of my work trek involves narrow unlit country lanes. I have been travelling these road for many years yet I still slow down considerably during the winter months, unfortunately other road users I frequently encounter seem not to be as wise or safe in their road use.
RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) have long campaigned for the adoption of Single/Double Summertime so that we have lighter evenings, saving up to 80 lives and 212 serious injuries a year. They have stated that things won’t change for this winter but they emphasise the importance of keeping yourself safe by being extra careful when driving, walking or cycling to work or school. The use the phrase “Make sure you can see and be seen! “. To view their campaign go to http://www.rospa.com/about/currentcampaigns/lighter-evenings/?utm_source=communicator&utm_medium=email&utm_content=article1_lighter_evenings_campaign&utm_campaign=safetymatters+24+-+completed%2fsent
In the meantime, I will be driving home in the dark again tonight. And after yesterday’s experience will be keeping an extra watchful eye for cyclists whom seem to believe peddling along the road dressed as a ninja is the safest option for them! Hopefully he reached his destination safely and in one piece without traumatising too many drivers.