Get off the road!

Tonight I had my first "you shouldn't be cycling on the road!" from a passing driver. Technically when I first heard them they were just yelling something at me through the passenger window while driving past me on a two lane stretch of road near home.

It wasn't until we both stopped next to each other at the lights 200m forget along the road that they told me I shouldn't be cycling on the road, and there was a cycle path (technically it's just a footpath on the side of the road we were on) that I should be using.

I politely told her that it's not mandatory to use a cycle path to which she said that I (presumably myself and all the cyclists I represent) shouldn't all be so surprised when we are in accidents with cars.

I was cycling along a well lit road with one bright front light, two rear lights, a hi-viz covered bag with a Triviz light on it. To make myself even less visible I also had on a yellow hi-viz jacket with reflective patches.

I think I'm well within my rights to be both surprised and upset if someone like her causes an accident and injures me in it. It sounds like she needs to spend more time focussing on the road and less time accosting other legitimate road users.

I guess I should be grateful she didn't use the "you don't pay road tax!" line. [Road tax hasn't existed since 1937.]

Sadly at a later point on tonight's ride I saw what appeared to be the aftermath of (hopefully) a completely different driver having had a 'road traffic collision' with a cyclist. The paramedics were still attending to the injured cyclist when I passed the junction.
Hopefully this will remind all road users to be extra careful and vigilant now that the nights are darker and damper.

"Cycle Routes and Other Facilities. Use cycle routes, advanced stop lines, cycle boxes and toucan crossings unless at the time it is unsafe to do so. Use of these facilities is not compulsory and will depend on your experience and skills, but they can make your journey safer." - The Highway Code (Rules For Cyclists)

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