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Cyclists need space when being passed

I was nearly killed Saturday while riding a bicycle, says reader

  • The beginning of morning rush hour, cars on the highway traveling to and from downtown

I was nearly killed Saturday.

Riding a bicycle while training for a charity ride, a vehicle pulling a travel trailer passed me and then pulled in before the trailer was clear, missing me by inches, with the vortex of the trailer almost throwing me off the road even at that.

Bicycles are vehicles – you have to wait for a place to safely pass, not just swerve into the oncoming lane and then pull back when you realize there’s actually someone in that lane.

Why is everyone in such a hurry that the brake pedal and finding a safe place to pass is just not an option?

Is that five seconds worth someone’s life?

The number of vehicles that swerved into the oncoming lane on blind approaches to hills on that one day alone was staggering.

I’m sure the guy would never have noticed if he’d hit me or not as he dealt me a glancing blow into a tree.

Maybe he would have read about the cyclist killed in a hit and run between Kinmount and Norland on the weekend and exclaimed to Marge: “Gee, we were on the road that day, good thing we didn’t get mixed up in that!”

Jeff Goss, Toronto

More control needed over roadworks crews

It seems to me that it is the lack of control over contractors by municipalities that has given rise to the poor state of our roads and highways.

It has also led to a number of very dangerous situations.

Contractors seem to be able to tear up sections of road and then leave them for days, and even weeks, before any further work is done.

During this intervening period, sometimes there are construction warning signs but, in many cases, there are none at all or an insufficient number.

The contractors pay very little attention to maintaining traffic flow during their work periods and none at all after they stop working.

Local police also appear to be complicit in this lack of attention to maintaining traffic flow and protecting citizens from injury.

They seem to believe that they are working for the contractor rather than taking care of the public, both pedestrians or motorists.

Recently in Toronto, I suggested to a police officer that he might assist some pedestrians who were trying to cross the street in a construction area.

His response was that they could walk to the next intersection and cross there. And that I should mind my own business!

It is time that the municipalities do their jobs properly – manage their contractors and remember that the people paying the bills are the road and sidewalk users.

Jim Roche, Toronto

Write to wheels@thestar.ca, or mail

to Your View, Wheels, Toronto Star,

One Yonge St., Toronto, Ont. M5E 1E6.

Please include your full name, address and telephone number.

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