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  • Daniel

    Firstly, that dooring video is my nightmare.

    Secondly, is the guy who tweeted it trying to use it to have a dig at Uber drivers??

    • Bex

      That is a nightmare, but i can’t help thinking it’s partly the cyclists own fault. Everyone knows about dooring, how hard it is for drivers to see bikes coming, and yet he still decided to ride brushing past the mirrors. it’s not always popular with drivers but riding a meter (even half a meter) out from parked cars makes a cyclist so much more predictable; this puts one in a stronger position on the road where you have a better angle to see people in cars or between cars as well as giving more room to move should some evasive action be required.

      I shudder every time I see people especially bunches riding so close to parked cars all that has to happen is the door gets unlatched and the whole lot of em are wasted.

      • Winky

        It isn’t the cyclist’s fault at all, but I agree that he could have been riding in a manner that reduced the risk of this incident. Having said that, the video above gives some insight into how many motorists view cyclists who have the temerity to ride further out into a traffic lane.

        • Sean Doyle

          Yes. No. If the rider didn’t ride in the door zone then the incident would not happen, so indirectly the rider is creating the environment for it to happen. Not withstanding the drivers responsibility to check before opening the door. As pointed out though there is a real problem that riders have to decide whether risking wrath of drivers behind or risking a door in the face. You only have to be doored once to take on the traffic instead in the vast majority of circumstances.

          • winkybiker

            I see that riding in the door zone creates increased risk, and that the cyclist chooses to do it. But is it really any different than if I choose to drive/ride though town late on a Friday night, knowing that there is an increased risk of drink-drivers? If one hits me, am I at fault for not leaving the road to them?

            • Sean Doyle

              That’s about risk assessment and risk minimisation. There is also a bit of semantics too. I would say riding in the door zone regularly, like a few times on each trip, has a much greater risk of incident than riding the streets on a Friday night or even very early Sunday morning for the same risk incident. I’d much rather slow the traffic down and have control over it, cop a barrage than travel in the door zone. I’m not trying to teach a lesson but protect myself and my assessment is that this is the safest place to travel but it must come with careful assessment of all the movement going on around me and being predictable and clear of your own movement to other traffic.

      • Daniel

        I don’t think that’s the right attitude.

        In a literal sense, yes, the cyclist is partly responsible because he was riding in a dangerous position. The reason he was in that position, however, was because the road and the law compel him to ride in that position (at least, in NSW it is mandatory to ride in the bike lane where practicable). Therefore, the only reason he was partially responsible is because he chose to ride at all.

        Literal responsibility, however, does not equate with fault. Otherwise we will very quickly find ourselves in the territory of talking about “uncovered meat” and “stray cats” when discussing more serious crimes (apologies if this reference confuses anyone who doesn’t get it, or offends any who do)…

        • Bex

          yeah that’s true, responsibility is a better word. The road laws in VIC do recommend that riders should be on the left or in a bike lane unless not safe to do so; It’s obviously not safe to be riding so close to parked cars.

          I also experience a similar thing when doing a bunch ride during the week. A certain intersection opens up into 3 lanes of which the left most lane turns left. So everyone trying to follow the letter of the law swerves over to the left then 100m later swerves back right when the left lane goes left and we all want to go straight on (unpredictable bloody cyclists). These laws are more about the spirit of the law (i think there is such a thing) rather than the letter. It’s better to be consistent and predictable. Swerving in and out between parked cars is another example of following the law but it being totally unsafe on any sort of busy road.

          • jules

            there’s no obligation to stay left on a multi-lane road, you can position yourself wherever you like, middle of the lane, in any lane..

            • Daniel

              Generally speaking, if it’s a multi-lane road, you should “own” the left lane.

              The problem is that, if there is a bike lane, you legally should be riding in it most of the time. NSW road rule is as follows:

              (1) The rider of a bicycle riding on a length of road with a bicycle lane designed for bicycles travelling in the same direction as the rider must ride in the bicycle lane unless it is impracticable to do so.

              That’s what seems to be happening in the video.

              Even if it isn’t legally mandated that you must be in that lane, it’s a bit much to criticise a cyclist for riding in a bike lane, when that is what they are designed for.

              I’ve been car-doored whilst riding in a bike lane. To some extent, I have sympathy for the driver who just had a moment of inattentiveness. It was legally her fault, but truly the responsibility has got to be on the jokers at the Local Council who thought painting a bike on the road next to a line of cars was a solution. In a way, it would be better if it didn’t exist because you wouldn’t cop flak when you don’t ride in the lane.

              • jules

                the exception to my post is when there is a marked bike lane, yes. you are compelled to use it (subject to practicability).

                I agree that improper bike lanes are worse than no bike lanes. it’s like an airline trying to take off with one wing, crashing and burning killing all on board and saying “we couldn’t afford 2 wings, so 1 was the best we could do”. muppets

            • winkybiker

              There is in Canada (where left equals right). In BC, we aren’t allowed to ride two abreast (ever) and must ride as close to the right-hand edge of the road (‘strayan left) as is practicable. But the drivers here are much better than in ‘straya, which remains the worst country I’ve ever had the dipleasure in which to ride.

    • winkybiker

      I think the Uber thing is a crude reference to the fact that their drivers are not professionals. Whatever you might think of professional taxi drivers attitudes and behaviours, millions of miles driven means that they are actually quite safe on a per km basis through the simple benefit of experience. Perhaps this taxi driver’s experience helped in this incident.

  • I have to comment on the abusive incident above. It goes without saying that drivers must be more considerate of cyclists (and vice-versa)… but I’ve said it anyway :)

    When cyclists (sometimes understandably) vent their rage at a motorist who has been inconsiderate, and then chase them through the streets to make sure that the motorist has learned his/her lesson, a lesson is learned, but it is often not the one that the cyclist wants the motorist to learn. What they “learn” is that cyclists are idiots with an over-inflated sense of entitlement and a crazy vendetta attitude. It would be a rare motorist who would pull over, apologise, acknowledge fault, and promise to only ever use public transport again in order to ensure the safety of all future cyclists.

    We don’t change people’s minds by forcing them to change their mind. Instead, we entrench divisiveness and create an even more antagonistic aggression from the perpetrator. Sometimes it is better to follow Tay-Tay’s advice and simply ‘shake it off’.

    *cue the argument that I’m blaming the victim or not standing up for the rights of cyclists.

    It’s not about that. But if we want to improve relationships, it works so much better when we don’t give enemies further fuel for their fire.

    • Winky

      Agree. I am trying to me more “zen” these days and very rarely confront motorists. Read “The Enlightened Cyclist” by BikesnobNYC (Eben Weiss) for a good take on the matter.

    • David Sweeney

      Have posted similar sentiment elsewhere. Well said Justin.

    • Gordon

      Agreed. I don’t think he helped “our” cause. A different approach may have achieved more.

      What I have found is acknowledging good behaviour, yes it happens, goes a long way. Try it you may be surprised.

      • jules

        yes, regularly waving thanks for considerate driving is a good thing to do.

        • Gavin Adkins

          I like to give a friendly wave at people for inconsiderate driving too. It confuses them.

      • Andy Logan

        This is a good point, I always wave, say thanks or give someone a thumbs up if they have let me out or waited until is safe to pass for example, just manners, but I hope that it leaves a positive experience with someone for example and maybe reduce some of this over inflated sense of self entitlement.

        Doesnt always help, but really I dont see what arguing with a driver does, most are not going to listen. I try and just wave or say hello to people that start abusing me, water off a ducks back really.

    • jules

      Justin – I may have asked you this before – but is there any value in making motorists ‘pay the price’ of aggressive driving towards you as a cyclist? I’ve mellowed a bit, but I still find myself catching up with motorists (where possible) and admonishing them (in exceptional cases only). what I’ve learned to do is not escalate the conflict – be stern but restrained. I thought the cyclist in that clip did OK – it was only after the motorist responded hysterically that it got out of control and I’d hesitate to blame the cyclist for that.

      but does inflicting some minor, restrained ‘punishment’ on motorists (gently telling them off) have value in changing their behaviour, or not?

      • Jules, one of the interesting findings from marriage research is that the way we initiate a conversation with our spouse has significant bearing on the outcome of the interaction. So a ‘harsh’ startup almost invariably leads to a negative relationship outcome – except where one partner is remarkably restrained, understanding, and patient. It makes sense too… if I go hard at you, all I typically do is create defensiveness. You go into fight or flight. You’re not really listening to me. You’re just marshalling your justifications… and of course my crappy behaviour towards you only increases the extent to which you feel justified in treating me in a lousy way.

        Conversely a soft startup typically leads to a lot less defensiveness and a lot more openness. It humanises us rather than turning us into ‘the enemy’.

        How this would play out on the road is challenging to write about… we don’t have long-term relationships with those who drive so close we nearly lose our lives. They usually already ‘know’ they’ve stuffed up, and having us call them on it often provokes defensiveness because people don’t like being told they’re wrong. So it’s a tough one.

        While I’ve done my nut more than once, I know that when I’m at my best my response has been, “Wow… that was close. I’m glad you missed me” with a big smile on my face. Or perhaps I’ll just catch them at the lights, nod my head and acknowledge them, making sure they see me. Eye contact makes me a person, rather than a jerk on a bike. Like I said, they usually know already.

        Does gently telling them off have value in changing their behaviour? Some enlightened motorists might respond to being chastised. But they probably already realised what they’d done and were hopeful of being more conscious next time anyway. So I don’t believe it does. Instead, I see it as something that only deepens animosity between the ‘groups’.

        • jules

          your point about initiating spousal conversations certainly rings true with me.. I recently did a feedback training session at work which emphasised that sort of thing :)

          but with driver ‘feedback’ – I was referring more to deliberately aggressive driving, rather than honest mistakes. I have a policy of being forgiving of honest mistakes, for reasons you cited. but when someone has a deliberate go at me, I feel compelled to respond. it’s a form of bullying – the official advice (for school kids) is often to remain passive and rise above it. but an alternative response is to hit back even harder. I’m not advocating that with on-road motoring aggression, but I struggle with the advice to lay down and do nothing. I accept that for some drivers, they aren’t getting the desired response (wound up cyclist), which is good, but for others, isn’t there a risk they will think “well, that went well”?

          • Jules let’s walk through the scenario you posed… someone is deliberately aggressive towards you. You are compelled to respond. What impact does it have?


            It only entrenches their belief that cyclists are idiots and justifies them in their aggressive behaviour. Yes, they may be bullying you (if it’s systematic, targeted, intentional, and designed to cause distress/harm), but pointing that out doesn’t change things. It only makes them angrier, and gives you more stuff to resent.

            If an idiot swerves and gets no reaction is he less or more likely to say “that went well”? I suspect he is less likely to say it. He’s doing it because he’s an idiot. No reaction, the behaviour is more likely to extinguish.

            We change the way other people perceive us when we treat them in a way that provides zero justification for negative behaviours. It is a long-term process. It doesn’t work with everyone – some people really do think they’re better than us and they can treat us poorly. But attacking is a low-probability strategy.

            • jules

              I’m going to try and work on my Zen from now on. I say that, knowing that it is tough to remember in the moment..

    • raphanatic

      So how do drivers learn that cyclist lives are in grave danger when they skim past riders or make “punishment passes” in frustration?

      I’ve sometimes told drivers that they passed me way to close and they didn’t even realise their driving could have been dangerous to me.

      I totally agree that your average dual-cab ute driving workman doesn’t give a frogs fat arse about cyclists but there are others that do need to be told they are risking our lives with their inconsiderate impatient driving

      How will we ever get #ametrematters law without pointing out why it matters?

      • Sean Doyle

        Even when it’s law people think that their opinion and take on the situation renders the law invalid. It doesn’t suit them or forces them to change so they are dismissive of it. It goes hand in hand with the whole ‘share the road’ war cry they bleat incessantly while demanding that we get out of the way and only ride on the outermost 6 inches of lane. You point out the laws to commentators and hoe their interpretation is wrong and you end up getting called self entitled fascist.

      • David Sweeney

        Teach them a lesson and get hit, and then die! In some cases that almost seems like the only way that the message will get through.

        In NZ we refer to the act of cycling further out into the traffic to be “Taking the lane”. I’ve been cycling and doing my bit to be considerate to traffic, and been damn near run over, so I’ve thought “Right, that’s it! I’ll take the lane along this section. It’s just to dangerous to keep left.” Cue the abusive motorist’s retort. On a few occasions like this I’ve had the opportunity to then stop next to the motorist at lights (I commute to/ from work a lot), and while being abused I have attempted to calmly (with restraint) point out that my actions were to save them from themselves, to save them from wanting to pass where there simply was not enough room, and to save them from the mental anguish of having another person’s life on their conscience.

        Some will continue the abuse, but mostly motorists (that I’ve encountered at least) simply did not know that they were anywhere near being close to hitting me when they passed, or had no idea that where/ how they had otherwise wanted to pass me might have put me in any danger.

        Sometimes it makes me wonder how close peoples cars must come to hitting inanimate objects or scraping walls, if they simply do not know how close the left side of their car is to cyclists as they drive by.

        • raphanatic

          Cyclists have to do something because the police rarely do anything about near miss driving- in this case the aggro driver only got a caution despite his driving, his threats of violence and his actual violence. I agree that this guy is now probably angrier than ever and i’m glad i don’t share the road with him.

          This is a life and death argument though. I had two inconsiderate close passes this morning when the drivers could have easily eased off for a second then passed- but no, they had to pass and risk my life, not theirs, to save that second, until the next set of traffic lights. I think its pretty reasonable to get angry when some drivers on the road are willing to waste my life and destroy my family, for them to save a few seconds. I think this should be pointed out…. after taking a deep breath.

          I’m not as motivated to chase down every close passers like the cyclist in this video who is himself obviously angry about bad drivers. But at least 4 million people on youtube have now seen what abuse cyclists cop if they dare speak out about selfish driving.

          • I agree that it’s reasonable and understandable to get angry. Your argument is entirely rational and justified. I agree with you at the basic, factual level of how we feel and why we respond the way we do. But when we do act that way cui bono? Who benefits? While some drivers may be positive in their response, I suspect that most either ignore us or become defensive.

            As for the 4 million people who have seen the abuse, my guess would be that those who hate cyclists will feel increasingly justified for their treatment of us. And those who feel like victims of motorists will feel awesome glee at the idiot, and feel increasingly justified in filming motorists and trying to ‘educate’ them – with more unfortunate incidents like this to come.

            • raphanatic

              the benefit comes when ignorant impatient drivers are told that they’ve endangered the lives of their fellow travellers for almost no gain- for some people this will be a revelation and if even a handfuls of drivers drives more safely in the future then surely that’s a plus for riders. It’s all about the delivery of the message. But by never saying anything to anyone, who will that benefit? Riders will keep getting hurt or killed; drivers won’t save any real time and continue to risk our lives without realising the consequences until they happen.

              I do think its good that millions of people are discussing who is right in this video- at least people are discussing it rather than no one talking about whether a meter really matters. Extreme views will always be extreme but I’m guessing that most accidents with riders are not caused by those with extreme views but by people who don’t appreciate that there is limited margin for error when there are unprotected cyclists involved.

    • Daniel

      I hate to contribute to the wave of consensus here (would prefer if there was a bit more verbal bloodshed in this thread), but I absolutely agree. If a cyclist is riding along, nearly gets hit, and goes “hey, what the f?” that’s one thing. But if you’re riding along with your helmet cam recording and you’re chasing a car around to get your point across, you’re a bit of a tool and you’re not helping anyone. If you weren’t a dbag on a bike, you would be a dbag in a car with a dashcam posting youtube videos about cyclists running reds….

      • I tend to agree.

      • jules

        I have been that tool. I would say that it tends to happen when you’re not thinking straight.

      • echidna_sg

        the cyclist in question has a history of doing just this – he has a massive victim mentality and uses his video cam as defence while goading/baiting the drivers into a reaction. There is a lot to be said for being considerate… on both sides.

      • Derek Maher

        I also agree,Sadly there are tosser,s riding bikes and other tossers driving cars.Then there are cycle lanes painted in places which leave little room for either cyclists or car drivers to pass each other safely.

  • David Sweeney

    What’s an “Uber”?

    • Daniel

      The harbinger of the taxi industry’s doom…

  • jules


  • Flash

    CT, how do I send you guys a private email about an issue

  • Anto, NZ

    Would it be possible to put the vidoes before the headline stating who wins the stage please? It’s great that you find the clips, but finding out in the title who has won sort of takes the excitement out of it.

  • Arfy

    The “Cycling Participation Survey” should really be called the “Sydney Cycling Participation Survey”. Well over 11,300 of the 20,000 people surveyed were from NSW, with the next biggest representation being Queensland with 2,600 people. Even though Melbourne’s outgrowing Sydney, they chose to survey only 1200 people from Victoria, which is less than they surveyed in Tasmania. It’s a farce that Austroads designed this survey to fail cyclists.

    • Dave

      Maybe the only conclusive result of the survey is that Victorians are not very good at responding to surveys while Tasmanians clearly have nothing better to fill their time?

      • Sean

        We’re all to busy riding our bikes dave. hang on, why aren’t you blacklisted?

        • Dave

          Because someone needs to keep your use of the English language in line.


          • Sean

            I noticed that as soon as I hit submit and nearly jumped out the window.

            • Dave

              Damn, now we’ll have to go ahead with your blacklisting.

      • Arfy

        But I respond to all surveys! When they phone, I respond with “I’m too busy” and hang up.

  • Simon Gamble

    I had a very similar experience in Adelaide where I was assaulted twice by a car full of drunken youths. Firstly I got hit from behind by the car and then had a glass bottle thrown at me. What are you meant to do other than ride home and pretend like it didn’t bother you?

    • raphanatic

      If you turn the other cheek, you can be enslaved for 1,000 years.

      Malcolm X

    • Arfy

      Get yourself a camera, like Fly6. It’s funny how a hot-head quickly changes their attitude when I point out their bad driving was recorded. Then if you feel aggrieved enough, take it to a Police station and submit it.

      • jules

        it can be really satisfying showing the police your footage and being told “nah, I’m not taking any action on that” “because” “because I said so” :)


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