I am part of an avid bike group that gets together every Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the summer months and bikes a 28 km loop around the outskirts of Waterloo. For most of these mornings it is a great workout and a very invigorating experience.
However, there have been a few clashes with angry drivers who believe that cyclists should have no part of the road. One such incident occurred on a beautiful morning while we were finishing our morning ride down Benjamin Rd. in Waterloo. The scenery on this ride is spectacular as the sun rises over the city of Waterloo as we ride downhill directly into the sunrise against the backdrop of the Mennonite farms and Waterloo suburbs. It is quite breathtaking and makes me appreciate the fantastic city that we live in.
The problem with this ride is there are no bike lanes and the road is a minefield of potholesand cracks that can send a unsuspecting cyclist for a nasty spill. On this morning one of our group was riding tandem, something that really irks most drivers. Part of his reasoning is to force the motorist to treat us like a vehicle and do a proper pass as opposed to squeezing us into the potholes in the rightmost 1/2 foot of pavement. On this morning this driver felt that we had no business being on the road and even though he had a completely vacant left lane to pass us, he felt he’d teach us a lesson by skinning the knee of one of our cyclists with his 2000 pound hunk of metal. To top it off after doing this he decided to pull over and give us an expletive laced mouthful as to why we should not be out on the roads. After nearly killing one of group we were not too happy to get a lecture from this guy and let’s just say nothing was resolved satisfactorily to either of the parties. After this heated discussion, we went on our merry way … single file I might add and he decided to cut very close to us again.
Now here’s my question to you motorists out there that dislike bicyclists sharing your roadways. Why would you want to risk killing a human being over something so silly as not wanting to slow down? Why not treat the cycling group like any other slow moving vehicle and wait for your opportunity to pass?
I have been told that this particular motorist has done this a few times to members of our group so he’s obviously got built up frustration with the cycling community. Let’s hope he lightens up before he tragically kills someone.