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Friday, 04 May 2007


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Passing people slowly and giving people room is what many cyclists complain car driver do not do. I agree though that the bell like the horn on a car can suggest that somebody wants you out of the way , and the polite approach is always favorable .


ermm btw that does say friday 10.07pm above so my sense of humour may be a bit skewed.


I cycle down the canal most days. I've always given way to people on foot, assuming they don't wave me past. I used to say 'can i squeeze by please?' which never offended anyone reasonable. I've started using a bell now so that i dont have to converse with those who have just got out of the car to walk down the canal as summer is here and don't take kindly to those stupid cyclists! Oh, and so i could ring it earlier and not surprise people. The only person it has ever surprised was a kind lady who actually made a point to say "im glad you rang the bell" despite her surprise.
To many though i think a bell - like a car horn, means get out of the way to them as it used to and still does sometimes to me.
I could go on forever but i guess what im trying to say is BOO THE CANALS ARE MINE ALL MINE HAHAHAHA


I could get in trouble here - you see I'm a passionate cyclist as well as a live-aboard boater. I always give towpath pedestrians right of way (unless they are nice enough to get well off the path and wave me through in which case I give them a big "thank you").

I fitted a bell recently because in spite of slowing right down, or even getting off... when approaching from behind I would say "Hi" or "excuse me" so they could here me coming, and going through with a big "thanks" or similar... many people would mutter something like "should have a bell". So, I've fitted one.

What normallly happens though is I ring it once or twice and either people don't or can't hear it - so I end up doing the same thing I always did! I think a polite "Hello there, lovely day!" is a nicer way to be noticed than a bell ringing. On the road, incidently, bells are completely useless. The most common use for one is on the frequent occasions that pedestrians walk into the road without looking (you can't hear a bike coming but people don't "think bikes"). By time you've fumbled for a bell both you and the pedestrain will be injured so the answer is to shout and, if there's room, swerve (both hands in control). Compulsory bell-fitting is suggested by people who don't ride.

Permits? Got one somewhere but I've got several bikes and no-one has ever asked for it...

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