OPINION: Cyclists, let’s just share the road

I HAVE nothing against cyclists per se, it's those thoughtless few I like to call 'lycra louts' that annoy me.

They are with us all year round, but seem to grow in numbers around the time of the Tour de France.

They are the ones who like to ride two or three abreast while enjoying a chat with their fellow riders, oblivious to other road users.

In some instances our whole neighbourhood is woken by a group of them as they pass by well before sunrise calling out to one another as they ride.

Then there are the ones who, when riding at speed, weave in and out of the dedicated bike lane and drift into the paths of vehicles coming up behind them.

I always try and maintain the correct distance between my vehicle and any cyclists, but it makes it hard when one veers into your lane as you approach.

A few years ago in NSW there was a call from a cyclist in the Sydney region for more dedicated bike lanes, and some people suggested that if they wanted more special lanes then they should pay registration for their bikes.

Naturally this caused an outburst of indignation from cyclists who complained they already contributed to the maintenance and building of roads when they paid car registration.

This overlooked the fact that car owners have to pay for each vehicle they own; one payment does not cover all.

Surely a small registration fee for all adult bike riders would not be too much for most people to afford.

Another argument that cyclists put forward is that they are helping the environment by taking to two wheels.

Yet many of the recreational cyclists I see along the coast usually drive to their preferred cycling venue, often in big four wheel drive vehicles.

They remove their bikes from the roof rack or the back of the vehicle and then drive home.

I accept that there are drivers out there who either hate cyclists or just do not make allowances for them on the road. However, I am sure the majority of drivers do the right thing.

All I ask is that cyclists have the same regard for those with whom they share the road.

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