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Cyclists: Scourge of the streets?

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MattC

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Unless it's a Motorway of course !
WRT to vehicle tax, it is relatively recent that this has been linked to emissions, and in the case of a California it's based more upon the purchase price for the first few years. When all vehicles are zero emission it will have to be based upon something else. With the political will, a mechanism and basis for cyclists to be taxed could be determined.
Incidentally the terms Tax and Excise Duty are synonymous, although "Vehicle Tax" seems preferred to "Road Tax" as a term these days.
The link to emissions may be relatively recent, but Road Tax (i.e. motorists paying in to the ring-fenced Road Fund) was abolished in 1937. Since then VED under whatever name it's had has simply been another aspect of general taxation. So if we consider that taxes pay for things (and that's a whole other argument!) then we all pay whether via income tax, VAT, corporate gains tax, NI, fuel duty, VED, whatever... cyclists included.
 
flying banana

flying banana

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Why so many bike racks on calis if you all hate them so much? Bikes I mean. And no, I cant be arsed to read ths whole thread because I don't have time to wait at a red light
 
Amarillo

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Tom
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In all honesty I think the costs are too prohibitive to the tax payer. I would have all cyclists who wish to use the public roads be fully trained, insured and have number plates.
Mile cycled compared with mile walked on the public highway, and walking turns out to be more dangerous than cycling.

Given that your proposal would undoubtedly put more pedestrians on the streets, and/or more motorists on the road, what would you do to protect pedestrians?
 
Amarillo

Amarillo

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This is the view down the street past my boys' school.

Look at the way the council narrows the footway by encouraging motorists to park there!

Think what they could do to promote cycling to school by reallocating the space for stationary vehicles to cyclists.

And before you cry "where will the residents park", take a look at this:

The free street parking is used by school staff, not residents.
 
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Toothlessjon

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That answer implies that motorists need further control, and that our roads need to be tweaked to be more in favour of the cyclist.
Im in favour of modifying roads to suit the motorist and if it benefits cyclists that’s great. However it must be financially viable. For example. Road maintenance, good for the motorists and makes the cyclists safer.
 
sensisuperstar

sensisuperstar

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I cycle and I drive, things irritate me about both sides of this argument. I cringe when I see commuting cyclists dodge in and out of traffic, pull out of junctions without looking and run red lights. Equally I get annoyed at drivers not giving other road users enough room, not using indicators, punishment passes and sat in jams with engines running...

Cyclists are not the scourge of the streets, I’d reserve that for idiots of all calibres, whether walking, cycling, riding or driving.
 
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Toothlessjon

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I cycle and I drive, things irritate me about both sides of this argument. I cringe when I see commuting cyclists dodge in and out of traffic, pull out of junctions without looking and run red lights. Equally I get annoyed at drivers not giving other road users enough room, not using indicators, punishment passes and sat in jams with engines running...

Cyclists are not the scourge of the streets, I’d reserve that for idiots of all calibres, whether walking, cycling, riding or driving.
Would you think it would improve if cyclists had to have a cycle licence and the driving test had to have a section specifically on cyclists and say horses?
 
soulstyledevon

soulstyledevon

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Would you think it would improve if cyclists had to have a cycle licence and the driving test had to have a section specifically on cyclists and say horses?
Wouldn’t change a thing.
Because infrastructure is wrong to begin with. That needs to be addressed first.

As for your previous comment. Don’t worry about Bing Bong up the country, our current ways are quickly killing the entire planet.
If we don’t act soon. We are in for a real shock.

I’m by no means an eco warrior.
Last week I read the Antarctic ice sheet is down to a third of what it should be. Not shrunk by a third, reduced to a third...!!!
 
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Alistair Hardy

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Cycling - no emissions, keep fit, less space needed on roads, cheap to buy and own, easy to park and we still get a hard time. With all this talk about saving the planet, bikes don't get nearly enough recognition they deserve!
It's not the Bicycles
It's not the act of cycling
It's some of the cyclists with a massive chip on their shoulder constantly trying to make the point they feel like victims and because they're so environmentally friendly and fit they can do just as they please on the road.
I said some, it's probably lots.
 
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Toothlessjon

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Wouldn’t change a thing.
Because infrastructure is wrong to begin with. That needs to be addressed first.

As for your previous comment. Don’t worry about Bing Bong up the country, our current ways are quickly killing the entire planet.
If we don’t act soon. We are in for a real shock.

I’m by no means an eco warrior.
Last week I read the Antarctic ice sheet is down to a third of what it should be. Not shrunk by a third, reduced to a third...!!!
I would say if you are correct then we are doomed because humans will not change on mass to cure the problem, and I would think it’s too late anyway.

I choose to believe that we will change enough to stop polluting and technology will help us adapt to the results of global climate change.
 
Amarillo

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https://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2019/mar/18/should-cyclists-be-licensed-and-insured-robert-winston

18 March 2019

On Monday, the scientist and Labour peer Robert Winston is to formally ask a question in the House of Lords about what assessments ministers have made “for requiring adults riding bicycles in city centres to have a licence and third-party insurance”.

Below is the entirely imagined response I would like the government to make to him.

Dear Robert
You ask what assessments we’ve made for obliging cyclists to have licences and insurance. The brief answer is: none whatsoever. Nor do we have any plans to do so. In fact, if you hadn’t asked this question it’s entirely possible we wouldn’t have even given it a moment’s thought in all 2019.
Why? Again, the short answer is this: it’s an utterly silly, pointless thing to suggest, as evidenced by the fact that more or less no countries or territories anywhere in the world require cyclists to be licensed, or to have mandatory insurance. It tends to only ever be fringe voices with a wider, somewhat murky grudge against cycling in general. I note that you have previously made some slightly suspect claims about cycle lanes causing extra pollution – I do hope you’re not one of those people.
I suppose it’s only fair if I explain why licensing and insurance for cyclists is such a non-issue. It’s pretty simple: such plans would achieve pretty much nothing, while causing significant problems. More widely, any sensible, rational government will do everything in its power to get more people cycling, not to put pointless bureaucratic obstacles in their way.
Let’s just take one example, that most relevant to you as a doctor: public heath. As I’m sure you know, one of the many negative effects of a nation where the great majority of even short, one-person trips are made by car is an NHS likely to collapse before too long under the strain caring for an ageing, increasingly sedentary and overweight population. Inactive living is central to this – it’s estimated to cause more than 5m early deaths a year worldwide, and even a fairly brief daily bike commute can have near-miraculous benefits for people’s health.
And then of course there’s pollution, a major crisis of both health and social justice, which a study last week suggested kills more people than smoking.
There’s almost too many positive benefits of getting more people on bikes to list – safer, quieter, more socially connected towns and cities, less impact on climate change. And it’s a fair bet that imposing sudden restrictions on cyclists would depress the number of riders. Why would you want to do that?
And how would such rules even work? Would the licensing and insurance be just for adults, or also children? If the former, what about teenagers – would they suddenly have to carry ID on the ride to school to prove they are under 18? How would the system even be enforced – would it also require bikes to be registered with number plates?
Finally – and this is perhaps the clincher – what would you hope to achieve by this? If you believe licensing transport users stops wrongdoing, can I point you to the statistics showing 86% of drivers speed on 20mph roads, and how a third admit to using handheld phones at the wheel. And on insurance, there’s the small matter of how even with laws mandating it there’s an estimated 1 million uninsured drivers on the road.
The other hugely important part of this is that when people break laws on a bike, yes, they can be irritating and even intimidating, but they very, very rarely kill or seriously injure other people. Of the 1,800 or so people killed every year on the UK’s roads, between zero and two typically tend to be killed because they were hit by cyclists. It’s not because cyclists are uniquely virtuous, it’s just the very different impacts involved in being struck by a 100kg bike-and-rider combination travelling at 15mph, or a 1,500kg SUV doing 35mph.
So, to summarise: your mooted plan would be to introduce a hugely convoluted new administrative scheme that would most likely have limited effect on the behaviour of an averagely law-abiding group of transport users who very rarely harm others, and have a huge net positive impact on the nation, while putting people off from this type of transport.
I’m afraid I just don’t get it.
 
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Alistair Hardy

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I would say if you are correct then we are doomed because humans will not change on mass to cure the problem, and I would think it’s too late anyway.

I choose to believe that we will change enough to stop polluting and technology will help us adapt to the results of global climate change.
You are correct the infrastructure is wrong and therefore it’s ludicrous to encourage thousands of cyclists to mingle with cars buses and lorries.
Of course there need to be rules, currently they are traffic rules and the Highway Code and many cyclists break them endangering their own lives.
Of course they should have at least third party insurance, the need for this was demonstrated last month when a cyclist swiped a lady who stepped in the road, not completely the cyclists fault but his involvement certainly made him culpable, and so the judge found. Many many cyclists see themselves and behave like sanctimonious morons, if they want to play on the road they should play by the rules of the road.

Whilst climate change is an issue these cyclical changes have been taking place for aeons long before green house gasses came along, so it could well be that our contribution is not as effective as is being portrayed, and therefore changing our ways and all hopping on bicycles will not bring significant change.
 
Billywizz

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Why so many bike racks on calis if you all hate them so much? Bikes I mean. And no, I cant be arsed to read ths whole thread because I don't have time to wait at a red light
Because they think it looks good and use them as washing lines
 
sensisuperstar

sensisuperstar

Wibble
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Would you think it would improve if cyclists had to have a cycle licence and the driving test had to have a section specifically on cyclists and say horses?
No, I don’t agree with the concept of a cycle license.

Licensing would only serve to discourage many who cycle safely, whether on a leisure ride, a sportive, in the chain gang, on the commute, cycling to school, going on a bike ride with your mates, bimbles to the pub or popping to the shops etc...

Cycling happens everywhere and not just big cities, so we should not apply a broad brush solution when we *in this instance* are talking about a minority of commuters in large congested urban sprawls.

In regards to educating motorists, there are many road users I see who would benefit from setting off 5 minutes earlier, using their mirrors, being less selfish and exercising some patience.
 

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