Urgent blood and airborne missiles

The Good

I saw the irony in nearly being run over by an ‘Urgent Blood’ van this morning. It doesn’t get much better than this, folks!

The Bad

If your thinking of throwing your rubbish into the bus lane…don’t. This morning my missus was nearly hit by an air-born wad of chewing gum that was launched from the window of…you guessed it…a white van. Disgusting! Yes, you might have looked sorry, but you wont have to pretend to be sorry if you don’t do it in the first place, right?

The Ugly

At the south end of London bridge a car had quite obviously collided with one of those horrid bendy buses. Fortunately, it seemed that no-one had been injured and the collision had been quite minor. Both vehicles had been turning left, the car (on the inside) obviously hadn’t waited for the bus which looked like it had already made the majority of its turn before being ran into. It is ridiculous that in Central London there are public transport vehicles that require a minimum of two lanes to make a not-so-sharp turn. It was undoubtedly the car drivers fault, and I am glad that no-one was hurt, but as a cyclist I’m all too aware of the hazards that these bloody abnormalities seem to create.

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3 responses to “Urgent blood and airborne missiles

  1. Can you explain to me the problem with the articulated buses? As a long time London cyclist, I have never had any more of a problem with them then any other large vehicle? Is it to do with getting caught on the inside when they’re turning left, or what?
    Cheers,
    Tim.

  2. sometimesangry

    I find it’s a lot easier to get caught out by the line taken by the back half of these buses at corners as opposed to conventional buses. The back half seems to have a tendency to edge closer to the kerb perhaps because the driver is less aware of what this end is doing. I have found bus drivers to be a mixed bunch when it comes to considerate behaviour, but the odd ones that don’t care are just dangerous in these things. It is quite common for drivers to accelerate ahead of me only to pull in front immediately after. When I anticipate this, I usually slow down and hang back until the bus passes enough for me to overtake, but the increased length of these buses means I often have to stop sharply just to avoid getting stuck on the inside or squished by the damn things.

    Statistically they have been a bit of a PR nightmare as they have been involved in so many more incidents – last year they caused twice as many injuries and 75% more accidents compared with other buses. The Evening Standard published a relatively concise article on them last year which is worth a read:

    Bendy buses – the fatal facts

    Apart from the safety aspect, they do seem to be at the front of congested traffic quite a lot – whether it’s because they have taken half an age as well as half a mile to turn a corner or whether it’s because they have taken up two lanes to let passengers off.

    If you haven’t found them to be a nuisance I envy you – perhaps you maintain a more assertive position on the road than me which might make the overtaking/left turning issue a bit redundant in your case. Who knows, but I hate them and I’m glad they’re going!

  3. Hm. Interesting. Those statistics are pretty damning.
    I ride in the middle of the lane that I am in, to combat people coming up beside me and drifting in, but I understand that this level of confidence and bolshi-ness is not for everyone.
    Thanks for the interesting blog, too.

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