Comment 76041

By lakeside (registered) | Posted April 18, 2012 at 14:08:51

Truly sad is the way the City patronizingly posts directives to cyclists and pedestrians on their website instructing the two on how to avoid being injured by automobiles.

They go to lengths to create and maintain the impression that both are mere guests on the roads, there only but for the grace of the 'rightful' users of (publicly funded) roads -- automobiles.

I can't find anywhere on the site a page outlining the proper procedures drivers should follow to ensure safety, but maybe I'm just missing it.

The courses mentioned are presented as being useful to recreational riders. I don't know about the first couple but the CAN-Bike ones are actually excellent courses that do address bicycle riding on public roadways, with traffic.

Personally, I'm totally comfortable riding in traffic and have been doing so all my life yet I've seriously considered taking CAN-Bike 2 course anyway. I know I would learn something.

Hearing this week that the CAN-Bike courses are back in Hamilton I recommended CAN-Bike 1 to a friend yesterday, someone who just bought her first bike since becoming an adult. She wants to just get on it and pedal but I'm urging her take the course. We'll go for a trail ride this week to see if that's needed.

My task of encouraging my friend to take CAN-Bike 1 is made more difficult by the fact that none of the courses are scheduled for any downtown areas. There's nothing offered from Dundas to the RHVP, the Harbour to the Escarpment. That's an awfully large area to leave out. And isn't that where the most bicycle riders are found? It's not like many existing riders couldn't use the education, too frequently riding on the sidewalks, among other unsafe practices.

The courses teach proper technique, clarify the HTA as it concerns bicycles, and instill confidence in city riders so it's too bad they're being promoted as being for recreation only.

Riding a bicycle in many parts of Hamilton presents quite a challenge due to the rather unique design of our roadways. I personally would like to see a course tailored specifically to the roadways in this city. (It's not exceptionalism, the roads here really are designed differently than in other Ontario cities.) Then again it might just make more sense to normalize the roads so that such courses don't need to be modified.

Anyway, the courses are serious, and excellent.

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