LETTER: Give more thought to cyclists

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Under new legislation used for the first time, cyclists have been banned from using the A18 Mountain Road, during the Isle of Man Festival of Motorcycling: “purely a safety measure” say the authorities, and any cyclist caught using it, will be dealt with “robustly.”

Given that 123 cyclists were killed on UK roads last year, and 70 this year, why not deal ‘robustly’ with drivers who exceed speed limits?

They should be seen as wasting lives and fuel. Also, with the high cost of petrol, air pollution and climate change, it’s a war against both poverty and stupidity.

While visiting the Isle of Man to watch the National Cycling Championships, I photographed a road sign with a clear message advising drivers to give cyclists 1.5 metres of space.

It also advised: ‘Garff Commissioners support SafeCyclingIOM’s call for a Minimum Passing Distance Law, (as opposed to simply requesting), when a motor vehicle overtakes a person on a bicycle. The aim is to make the roads safer for the vulnerable and encourage more people to travel by bicycle.’

For the first ten years of my working life, my low income dictated that I travelled to work by bicycle.

Today, on pension credits, my low income dictates that, I travel by bicycle.

My bus pass gets me nowhere, fast.

A Minimum Passing Distance Law for cyclists will help those on low incomes to find money for rent, and rising energy costs etc, and help me and my fellow geriatric cyclists to ward off the likes of arthritis and dementia, i.e. reduce our need for the NHS and care homes!

Thanks to cycling: ‘Dutch children are the happiest kids in the world’, and ‘Copenhagen is the happiest city in the world.’

If 1+1 = 2, then a Minimum Wage Law plus a Minimum Passing Distance Law, equals civilised and equality.

Allan Ramsay

By email