Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Central Road Cyclo-paths

A week ago I was a victim of what seems to be an increasing problem in Central Road - that of adult cyclists riding at speed along the pavement. While I was not hit, it was a little close for comfort, and the footpath was fairly busy, meaning anyone of the pedestrians going about their daily business could have been hurt.

Luckily I had my camera at the ready and managed to snap the above picture before it was too late.

Coincidentally I was looking through the letters page on the Sutton Guardian website earlier today and saw a letter from a concerned Worcester Park Shopper who was nearly knocked over by "6 youths aged about 18 years old, absolutely speeding down the pavement weaving in and out of pedestrians" as they rode down towards the Midas Touch pub and round the corner out of sight.

Do you think this is becoming a big problem in the area? And does anyone know who it as that I managed to snap last week?

23 COMMENTS (Add Yours Now!):

michael said...

Incidents such as this might increase as the traffic has been at a standstill in Worcester Park for so long now. There is no defined cycle ways on the the High Street. Cyclists risk their lives overtaking angry/frustrated motorists on the inside or outside of traffic so I suppose the tendency is to 'pop' onto the pavement.

The pavement area that you have photographed look easily wide enough to allow for a cycle path to be added?

Nichu said...

I don't think the youths mentioned are representative of cyclists.
I have nearly been hit by a cyclist whilst crossing outside costa who went through a red light. That said, most times when I use that crossing there are several cars who go through the red. And the Green Lane turning is a joke, I don't think there's ever a time when the lights are heeded.
There is a lot of bad driving behaviour on Central Road which is currently accepted without penalty, it would be a shame if one or two cycling incidents were taken to be the most pressing issues in the area.

WP resident said...

I am glad you have raised this, I mentioned this problem to the local police last year. I am fed up of some cyclists creeping up behind you - if you suddenly change direction they could come crashing in to you! I have already seen a woman go flat on her face due to a cyclist making impact - she had badly cut knees and bruising. I am concerned my small child will be next, children are unpredictable and can suddenly dash off - could be nasty if one of these silent speeding cyclists appear.

Quagmire said...

Definitely an increasingly dangerous problem, but not just in Worcester Park. I regularly walk along the London Road towards Stonecot Hill and see several adult cyclists each day using the pavement. It needs proper policing, because if you say anything you will get a mouthful of abuse. Unfortunately this is going to get a lot worse during the summer holidays. On another subject a new craze now appears to be young children using their foot scooters inside of supermarkets. I wish the supermarkets would disallow this. It is not necessary and can be particularly dangerous for certain elderly people.

OUT the ASBOs said...

I tell you what, why don't we email our local Blogger photos of these selfish idiots, so he can upload them to a 'rogue's gallery' of cyclists using the pavement, fly tippers in action, white man vans blocking yellow boxes, and 4x4 driving women with mobiles welded to their ear, who think disabled spaces are for their personal convenience?

The police haven't got the time or manpower, and Sutton Council haven't got the backbone, (and anyway, seem preoccupied with laying stones that disintegrate in Central Road).

BUT being publicly shamed in front of the local community might actually deter much of this anti-social behaviour... What do you think Mr. Blogger?
[Or is it now an infringement of a criminal's human rights to photograph their criminal action in a public place?]

andy said...

Michael. It is an offence to ride a bicycle on the pavement be it wide enough or not.. PERIOD.

andy said...

Good call !

These lycra clad eco warriors seem to think that they own the road, the pavement, the grass verge, the red traffic light system, the one way road, zebra crossings and yes - even railway carriages !!!


Each cyclist should be forced to pass a proficiency test prior to cycling in a public place and, similar to a motor vehicle driver, be denied the right to do so if caught offending multiple times. They should also carry insurance.


Cycling Mania said...

Unfortunately many bike riders are a law unto themselves when he comes to hopping from the road to the pavement in order to beat traffic. It is a shame that bikes are not registered, like cars, with registration numbers so that more of these selfish and dangerous people can be prosecuted.

Paul said...

Nichu, not unusually, speaks with balance and consideration. I'm sure there are bad cyclists - there are certainly bad drivers - but the concept that one can simplistically conclude "4 wheels good, 2 wheels bad" is a nonsense. The shock jocks love to portray London roads as such, but the problem is the inconsiderate git riding along the pavement, not cyclists in general.

guest said...

Unless the cycle has wheels of less than I think 18 inches in diameter, this was brought in decriminalise children riding on the pavement. But it also applies to some folding bikes. Also cycle tracks marked on the pavement allow cyclists to use the pavement, again these usually will have some form of tactile marker so blind people know they are at risk.

Cycling on the pavement, carries fines of between £50 and £500 pounds depending on the seriousness of the offence. If injuries result, fines are unlimited and the cyclist could face civil claims for losses that could run into millions in the worst cases.

A said...

Interesting point...if someone were to be seriously injured by a car, in the worst circumstances either disabled or killed, the driver will have insurance to cover the potentially thousands of pounds to compensate the injured party and pay care costs, home adaptions, other expenses etc etc etc etc.

If a similar injury was caused by a cyclist, who presumably wouldn't have third party liability insurance, then that injured person would be left high and dry.

You might say a cyclist wouldn't cause such a terrible injury. But there are circumstances whereby a chain of events may result I'm the injury occurring, or indeed if a child was struck by a speeding cyclist it would be devastating.

As someone pointed out, cyclists are known to speed along the pavements weaving in and out of pedestrians without warning. I have often thought if me or my daughter took an unexpected step left or right we could easily have been mown down by them.

Michael said...

yea, lets discourage people from cycling at all, and while we are at it lets force all these 'eco' shoe wearing and pram pushing pedestrians who think they own the pavements, the road, the ground, stepping into the road without looking, clumsily turning into other people and knocking into them, running others feet over with their prams, pushing the crossing button and not waiting till the lights change, walking while on the phone, dropping litter, barging past at a fast pace, allowing children to wonder aimlessly, stopping for no particular reason, and yes - even in railway carriages !!!


Each pedestrian should be forced to pass a proficiency and courtesy test prior to walking anywhere in a public place, similar to motor vehicle driver, Be denied the right to walk if caught offending multiple times. All pedestrians should carry insurance too.


andy said...

EXCELLENT ! A FIRST CLASS post. Made me smile. Have a great week Michael.

Michael said...

I was actually asking the question of why there is no provision for a cycle path in the high street. With all this 'Boris' money being spent on pretty flowers beds and paved crossings why was a cycle lane not included as part of the upgrade. Helping to alleviate the issue whilst providing cyclists more safety too.

You seem to agree that there is enough room to have a cycle lane and from the many comments there certainly seems to be a need for one. There are plenty of cycle racks but no provision to cycle around safely. Until provision is made I fear this growing issue will not go away.

guest said...

If the PCSOs who ride the 151 from Sutton Police station to Worcester Park station, and back, several times a day - in pairs and to no obvious purpose - were to get off at the top of the hill and walk down, one each side of Central Road (rather than two-abreast chattering), they might then do something useful in deterring bad behaviour; such as cycling on the footpath, parking partly, or fully, on the pavement and other anti-social activities.

As for painting cycle lanes on the pavement, that should never be done in a shopping area. In Sutton there are plenty of pavements despoiled by white lines indicating lanes for cyclists - and even for pedestrians - but they are rarely used, so just add to the mess.

I hope the cycling yob (30-something, grey shirt, skinny, cropped hair) who jumped the lights at speed at Worcester Park station at 8-15 this morning, coming from the Kingston direction, narrowly missing 5 pedestrians crossing to the station, before slewing onto the footpath to go under the bridge, forcing two more people to move out of his way, all without slowing, gets stopped and cautioned before he injures someone. A Police Caution, followed by publicity in the local rag and online, might just make some of these idiots improve their behaviour and show that the authorities take the matter seriously.

And what are our Local Councillors doing about it?
Not a sufficiently enticing bandwagon to jump on, I suppose.

andy said...

This is what happens when you let the pedal pushers take over. This isn't the high street in Worcester Park - nor any of the surrounding roads. It's the Upper Richmond Road - somewhere in-between Putney High Street and Roehampton Lane.

Why did this happen..?

Because Boris shut down most of London in order to let a few lycra-clad eco warrior tree hugging - i will never stop at a red traffic light - bycicle riders have the freedom of the Captital of England.

..and why is this relevant in Worcester Park...?

... because next year - IT WILL BE OUR TURN.

Have a nice day.

Make a Travel Plan said...

Interesting gripe, Andy. Presumably, you also want to stop the London Marathon, Cricket at the Oval, the University Boat Race, Twickenham Rugby, the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, Crystal Palace Athletics, the Epsom Derby and close down every League Football Club in London too? Shutting down all the London schools and hospitals ought to help as well. And if all the businesses in London were evicted, you'd probably have nice empty roads, all with nothing at the end of them - or along them. Brilliant!

Or you can have a brain wave and do what everyone with the intelligence of more than a fruit fly would do - avoid travelling by car near a major sporting event, on the actual day it is happening! - Some drivers have even found they actually enjoy watching the major sporting events - either on TV or in person.

The Dutchman said...

Cyclists are "taking over", Muslims are "taking over", therefore all cyclists must be Muslims??

Raleigh Chopper said...

Funnily enough, at the mosque public meeting, after promises of a cycling friendly mosque, with a purpose built cycle rack, a Councillor exposed the fact that the cycle racks outside were empty!

Not a single super-cycle friendly supporter of the mosque planning application had actually arrived by cycle and unsurprisingly, the applicant was told 'on yer bike!'

In answer to your question, I reckon that's a 'NO'.

Moulton said...

No the Burqas get caught in the pedals

Huey said...

This is not a cyclist. It is a person on a bike. And they need to pump their tyres up. He doesn't need to run red lights as he's already on the pavement, and if he rides at night it's unlikely he'll be lit up appropriately.

I can't imagine him "riding at speed" however, but it's all relative I suppose.

The woman in the article you linked to is misinformed - there are spot fines for such behaviour, so there is something that can be done, though it does require a spot fine giver to be in the vicinity at the time; an ever diminishing phenomenon.

And I'm glad Nichu has regained the thread's perspective on this. Compare the figures of pedestrians KSI by cyclists with those by vehicles and you will see the immediate need still rests with improving driving standards, especially when you realise just how many pedestrians have been KSI by vehicles on the pavement!

Howard said...

Unfortunately cycle paths on the pavement are not the answer as pedestrians ignore them. There should be better driver education.The other day I was cycling along a residential road with cars parked on both sides. I was on the correct side of the road. A large transit van came hurtling towards me mostly on the wrong side of the road, ie. mine. There was a gap in the parked cars on his side where he could have pulled over to let me through,but no,he came straight at me,pulling out even more. I had to jump off and try and lean away from him. I mouthed a polite remonstration to be met with an obscene gesture and a burst of Anglo Saxon expletives! I should add that I am a lady of a certain age and was wearing hi viz clothing. Unfortunately this sort behaviour is becoming more common.

guest D said...

Cycle paths that consist of no more than painted lines are certainly not the answer, but properly installed ones with tactile edges so that blind or partially sighted people don't wander into them are, where there is sufficient room to accomodate them. West Hill in Wandsworth is a good example.

The problem is they cost a lot, really a lot.

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