CyclingSavvy Is Unproven I

Continuing along with my Blog Post Generator [
http://iamtraffic.org/2012/12/cyclingsavvy-works/%5D

We are going to continue to repeat ourselves ad nauseum.

“I don’t think many are claiming a trained cyclist is just as likely to crash as an untrained one.”

I totally disagree.

That is, (all caps for the skimmers) CYCLING SAVVY TRAINED CYCLISTS ARE AS LIKELY TO CRASH AS AN “UNTRAINED” (SIC) ONE. [Emphasis mine.]

“Do we take an ends-justify-the-means approach in which almost any strategy which encourages people to bike is deemed okay…”

YES! That’s how ALL sales tactics work. Cycling advocacy is a sales job, in part, so when we are doing sales, we use sales techniques. For some reason the VC DBs keep me stating not only the obvious, but tautology itself.

“…or do we help each individual maximise their safety, comfort and competence through means which are as ethical as possible.”

YES!

We can do both through infrastructure.

In fact, according to this blog, it is the One True Way. 🙂

“Certainly those are all worthy goals, but it has led proponents to take some liberties with science, and misled many people about what factors are important both in increasing the number of cyclists and improving safety.”

So basically those of us who want infrastructure are liars? I beg to differ.

“They argue that increasing the numbers of cyclists will make cycling safer in spite of hazards created by some types of bicycle-specific infrastructure.”

No, we argue that qualified American engineers are intelligent enough to build streets that are safer for cyclists than the streets are now.

We argue that the current built environment, in many places, is wholly unsuitable for cycling at all and that to recommend cycling in those places is irresponsible at best.

“Analysis of one study of a Danish bikeway found that the decrease in crash rate was less than would be predicted by Smeed’s Law. To put it in a more direct light: the number of crashes went up more than it would have if there had been no bikeway.”

Ug!

CRASHES DO NOT EQUAL DEATHS AND SERIOUS INJURIES. CRASHES ARE IRRELEVANT COMPARED WITH DEATHS AND SERIOUS INJURIES. THERE IS NO PROOF THAT WELL BUILT INFRASTRUCTURE INCREASES THE NUMBER OF DEATHS AND SERIOUS INJURIES.

“And even if safety in numbers through facilities does reduce the injury and fatality rates, if those same facilities actually cause some injuries and deaths, then we must question the ethics of such a strategy, especially if other strategies are available which would be less likely to cause harm.”

This is called arguing the possibilities, and here we come to fall back position number one. They concede the very thing that they had been argued then they completely change the terms of debate so we can continue to argue far beyond common sense and reason.

“But if increases in cycling are due in large part to factors other than bikeways, then any reduction in the crash rate is indirectly due to those other factors, not to the bikeways, and if those bikeways cause or contribute to conflicts and crashes — which they do — then providing bikeways as means of increasing use and improving safety does not work and is in fact unethical.”

But we don’t build bikeways solely for safety. We build them to get more people cycling and because bikeways are more fun to ride on. They also make transportation more efficient for ALL modes. AKA SEC: safety, efficiency, and comfort. Note how these other two things are NEVER argued. It as is the VC crowd is deaf.

Also, if bikeways are a small part of safety, this does not mean that they put cyclists at risk. As long as they don’t cause a great number of cyclists to die or get seriously injured then bikeways are acceptable by me.

“Aside from the debate about whether or not bikeways improve safety, the need for cyclist training is essential.”

I totally disagree.

Cycling is actually not really that complicated. There’s a video, online, of a toddler doing mountain biking. This is safe because there are no cars. Add speeding cars to the mix and this would be insane. The same is true for all levels of cycling. Unless we enhance our nervous systems with science fictional drugs or electronic implants, we hav no hope of spotting a black, fast moving car. They literally come out of nowhere and there’s nothing to be done about this kind of thing.

“Florida emergency room data shows that two-thirds of adult bicyclist hospital admissions do not involve a collision with a motor vehicle.”

Yes, and for every major race, you see some pretty bad collisions. These racers are the best cyclists in the WORLD. Whether or not you have a solo accident is based in a large part on experience (NOT TRAINING BUT HOURS RIDING), speed, terrain, and your comfort with risk. If you ride slow and carefully, alone, on good infrastructure, you are unlikely to have a serious accident.

“Crashes involving turning and crossing conflicts occur whether one is cycling on a cycle track, a bike lane, a sidepath, a sidewalk, or on a road with no special accommodation at all.”

This sentence had me speechless because it showed a totally uneducated and uniformed understanding of what cycling infrastructure means. Good cycling infrastructure tasks into account these kinds of conflicts. It always shocks me as to how arrogant VC DBs are to think that nobody but them ever thought about these kinds of collisions.

“Training cyclists reduces their crash risk for all of these circumstances.”

Again, all the “training” you need is this: ride slowly, yield aggressively, pick your routes to have less and slower traffic.

“I — and other proponents of bicycle driving — am often assumed to be against all types of bicyclist-oriented infrastructure.”

That’s the least of your problem. I also think that you have a spotty grasp on the English language since we common refer to “bicycle riding” there’s no such thing as “bicycle driving”. It does entertain me and my friends, however.

This will be continued as this is getting too long for the Internet. I’d have long stopped reading by now. 🙂

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