Forum home Road cycling forum The cake stop

things motorists do which annoy cyclists

oblongomaculatusoblongomaculatus Posts: 413
edited February 2014 in The cake stop
An old theme, I know, but here I'm not talking about aggressive or dangerous behaviour, just low grade selfishness or stupidity; although the two things which wind me up the most do have the potential to cause an accident, they are usually just aggravating:

1] Not leaving enough room when overtaking, especially on quiet country roads when there is a car coming in the opposite direction and the overtaking driver can't be bothered to slow down and wait a few seconds for the road to be clear, squeezing past at 60mph.

2] Driving or parking in cycle lanes. There seems to be a consensus amongst motorists that it's OK to inconvenience cyclists like this if it's convenient for them (the motorist). It isn't. I sometimes ask parking motorists - politely -why they are in a cycle lane, and have compiled a list of responses. Excluding abuse, and anti cyclist rants (you don't pay road tax... etc) here are some of my favourites.


I'm just popping into the bank/corner shop/post office.

I'm texting.

I won't be a minute.

But I'm not in anyone's way.

So where am I supposed to park the van then? (from a builder delivering supplies to a site. There was a bay opposite, but that would have meant several trips across the road carrying bags of cement etc, which would have been FAR too much hassle).

Just picking up/dropping off (from taxi drivers).

I'm allowed to (no explanation given as to why she thought she was allowed to).

What cycle lane?


Anyone got any others? There are some acceptable excuses - Ambulances and fire engines, of course, and police cars when on an emergency call (ie not popping into Tesco Express to buy cigarettes). It's also OK for cars to pull briefly into a cycle lane to make room for emergency vehicles to get through. And, er... that's it. Everyone else, please, don't do it.
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  • edhornbyedhornby Posts: 1,780
    and yet - a wide carriageway with no bike lane - all the motorists queue on the right, up to and even over the line forcing you to go up the inside or overtake with head on traffic...

    2 lanes filtering into one, motorists spread themselves right to the edges of the lanes and even drive 2 abreast with neither giving way to the other... idiots
    "I get paid to make other people suffer on my wheel, how good is that"
    --Jens Voight
  • Car drivers who try and overtake me when there's a traffic island up ahead and no room. Last night’s incident resulted in the car almost taking out the bollard. Idiots.
  • Car drivers who try and overtake me when there's a traffic island up ahead and no room. Last night’s incident resulted in the car almost taking out the bollard. Idiots.

    I'd forgotten that one. It hasn't happened for a couple of days, so other idiocies pushed it to the back of my mind. :wink:
  • MichaelWMichaelW Posts: 2,226
    Overtake then stop.
    Queuing at a side junction on the cycle-path crossing point.
    Failure to signal
    turning into a right-hand side junction and cutting the corner.
    cutting the corner on a sharp bend.
    Parking to create a chicane.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,476
    just driving. if they stopped that they'd cease to be a problem.
  • Sometimes they can be annoyingly cautious too. I know I shouldn't complain but sometimes they will sit behind me on a country lane even though there is more than enough space and vision to safely overtake me. The ensuing tailback then gives me the stink eye as they finally get to passing me because they feel it's me that held them up and not the incompetence of the old guy too scared to overtake until a Heathrow runway sized straight appears
  • ProssPross Posts: 22,167
    Breathing!
  • (Applies when I'm driving too) Those who don't stop at junctions, they continue to roll forwards at about 0.1mph, you can see them moving so you have no idea if they've seen you and are going to stop or not!
  • ProssPross Posts: 22,167
    The most annoying is when drivers force their way past you and then either turn off, stop or get stuck in the queue that's ahead of them. Why they can't just wait for a second I'll never understand.
  • Pross wrote:
    The most annoying is when drivers force their way past you and then either turn off, stop or get stuck in the queue that's ahead of them. Why they can't just wait for a second I'll never understand.

    Because many drivers can't see beyond three feet past the front of their own bonnet. If there is a cyclist in front of them (or a car for that matter) that's all they can see, everything beyond that might as well not exist.
  • gingamangingaman Posts: 576
    Triangle overtakes, either sitting on your back wheel and throwing themselves wide after they have passed, or starting out wide and cutting in right in front of your wheel.

    Similarly, cars that overtake and then drift into the cycle lane
  • ProssPross Posts: 22,167
    In keeping with the OP's original rant, I often end up here and unable to get into the cycle lane that takes me to the ASL because vehicles block it. When I moaned at one driver I was told they had to so that vehicles could get past them into the right turning lanes. So holding up a cyclist was OK but not holding up a car. I pointed out they wouldn't hold anyone up as the left turn lanes go green way before the right turn lane but that was beyond their comprehension :roll:
  • y33stuy33stu Posts: 376
    Cars, busses, and taxis that think the ASL is invisible and ignore it. I regularly make the point of asking what kind of bike they're riding when their car is filling the bloomin box.
    Cycling prints
    Band of Climbers
  • edhornby wrote:
    and yet - a wide carriageway with no bike lane - all the motorists queue on the right, up to and even over the line forcing you to go up the inside or overtake with head on traffic...

    Don't you think that this may be because some motorists expect bikes to come up their inside, as if there were a cycle lane there? I know that when I'm commuting home in busy traffic there seems to be an endless stream of bikes squeezing their way between the kerb and the cars, so the cars pull towards the middle of the road and push me into oncoming traffic. I've 'discussed' this with the undertaking cyclists when we reach the lights and they claim that it's safer for them there and what the hell do I think I'm doing riding in the middle of the road! :roll:
  • guineaguinea Posts: 1,177
    (Applies when I'm driving too) Those who don't stop at junctions, they continue to roll forwards at about 0.1mph, you can see them moving so you have no idea if they've seen you and are going to stop or not!

    This is the single most annoying thing.

    Every day I have to break 20 or 30 times due to not knowing if I've been seen.

    Keep your nose behind the give way lines and slow down consistently, don't rush up to the lines, hammer the anchors and then look. It just gives me the fear.
  • The worst part is this is exactly how I got knocked off by a car, I was coming around a roundabout and thought the driver had slowed and was crawling so they could slot in behind me after I passed, but instead they kept going.
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    Threads like this tend to encourage a cyclists are good, motorists are evil attitude. This polarisation and tendency to generalise, to me, is the most annoying thing that both motorists and cyclists do. There's a lot of that on display in this thread from idiots condemning all motorists just for being motorists but happily there are also some less ignorant, more balanced comments.
    Bad cyclists do more to harm the rest of us than any motorist. They flout the rules of the road and good road etiquette which undermines any respect we might get from motorists.

    Most adult cyclists are also motorists. Most motorists are not cyclists. We're the ones in the best position to understand both sides and contribute to easing antagonisms.
  • Gotta love those moments where a car overtakes you and then turns left (Right for the US/EU) within 100 yards of the overtake - sigh.

    Or those times when you make eye contact with the driver who pulls out in front of you anyway.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    Ai-1 .. Quite agree

    Social construct known as 'othering'. We define ourselves in terms of what we are not. All cyclists good, motorists evil. Until we are a motorist then all motorists good, everyone else evil

    Motorists are sometimes lazy, opinionated, inattentive and make mistakes. A bit like me really
  • crispybug2crispybug2 Posts: 2,997
    bushpixy wrote:
    Gotta love those moments where a car overtakes you and then turns left (Right for the US/EU) within 100 yards of the overtake - sigh.

    Or those times when you make eye contact with the driver who pulls out in front of you anyway.


    When I went out for a ride last Sunday I rode onto the main roundabout near where I live and as I always do I look straight into the windscreen of any car that approaches from the left, by the time I got to the next roundabout about 500 metres down the round the driver who had been approaching from the left of the previous roundabout pulled alongside and said that I had been intimidating her by, and I quote, "Glaring at me like I was some kind of mass murderer!"



    You couldn't make it up.
  • ai_1 wrote:
    Threads like this tend to encourage a cyclists are good, motorists are evil attitude. This polarisation and tendency to generalise, to me, is the most annoying thing that both motorists and cyclists do. There's a lot of that on display in this thread from idiots condemning all motorists just for being motorists but happily there are also some less ignorant, more balanced comments.
    Bad cyclists do more to harm the rest of us than any motorist. They flout the rules of the road and good road etiquette which undermines any respect we might get from motorists.

    Most adult cyclists are also motorists. Most motorists are not cyclists. We're the ones in the best position to understand both sides and contribute to easing antagonisms.

    This is true; the us v them attitude. Cycling is my job as well as my hobby (I'm a courier) and my original post was based on the two things I see most often. I've long since gone past the point of getting annoyed by those things, partly because as they're so common I almost fail to notice any more. When I do, it's more often with amusement than anything else, as I hope is clear from my post.

    As for balance, there are the drivers who will stop to let you turn right across busy traffic (several of those today, in fact) or the ones who let you into a main road from a side street. I also see many cyclists doing things they shouldn't (going through red lights at pedestrian crossings is the most common. Even though you know you're doing the right thing, you feel so silly waiting for a green light as twenty bikes fly though, some of them weaving in and out of pedestrians). I haven't done a census of cyclist/motorist misdemeanours, but I suspect if I did the result would be a score draw.

    I am actually one of the few adult cyclists who doesn't drive. I found being behind the wheel so stressful I gave it up not long after passing the test; but I think I can still see the motorists' side; most of the time, anyway.

    As I said at the start, most of the annoying things motorists do in relation to cyclists are down to thoughtless self centredness. The real hardcore idiots, the ones who genuinely think cyclists shouldn't be allowed on the roads, and who reinforce this belief by behaving aggressively towards them, are thankfully rare.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    Cyclists who work for the environment agency are the new social pariah.

    Previously to that it was bankers
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,476
    crispybug2 wrote:
    bushpixy wrote:
    Gotta love those moments where a car overtakes you and then turns left (Right for the US/EU) within 100 yards of the overtake - sigh.

    Or those times when you make eye contact with the driver who pulls out in front of you anyway.


    When I went out for a ride last Sunday I rode onto the main roundabout near where I live and as I always do I look straight into the windscreen of any car that approaches from the left, by the time I got to the next roundabout about 500 metres down the round the driver who had been approaching from the left of the previous roundabout pulled alongside and said that I had been intimidating her by, and I quote, "Glaring at me like I was some kind of mass murderer!"




    You couldn't make it up.

    Perhaps a little nod or a wave as they give way - although they should give way anyway - I've found it does help to acknowledge them.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    I tend to have a permanent smile on my face which helps. Actually it is a desperate attempt to get more oxygen in and is more of a grimace but it does seem to break the ice. Richie Porte does it...
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 22,325 Lives Here
    The way some of them act as though they own the road because they think they pay for it. Similarly some cyclists irritate me, some pedestrians annoy me too. There are some people in all walks (or drives) of life that irritate me. This is because I'm a cantankerous old git, but also because some people are twunts whatever their chosen means of transport.
  • cyd190468 wrote:
    My favourite is when a car goes to great lengths to overtake even though your going down a hill at 10km/h over the posted speed limit. For some reason they perceive bikes as slow no matter how fast you're going.

    Yes! I think this perception is the main reason for dangerous overtaking or pulling out in front of you. Some drivers see a cyclist and something in their head goes "Bike. Slow. Not much faster than walking pace. Easy to get past/I've got plenty of time to get out." When in fact in urban areas at least, often bikes are moving at much he same speed as the motorised traffic, if not faster. By the time a driver realises they've misjudged the situation there's a near miss or even a collision. And have you noticed at traffic lights how for the first two or three seconds when you pull away, you accelerate faster than the surrounding cars? This seems to surprise some, too.
  • y33stuy33stu Posts: 376
    cyd190468 wrote:
    My favourite is when a car goes to great lengths to overtake even though your going down a hill at 10km/h over the posted speed limit. For some reason they perceive bikes as slow no matter how fast you're going.

    +1 to this. This happens to me on several points of my commute in, and home. One section sees me ride downhill, past a speed camera in a 30 zone. On more than one occasion I've had a car overtake me, and get flashed by the camera as a result of me doing 28mph ish. The first time I felt sorry for the guy. Now I think it's its funny.
    Cycling prints
    Band of Climbers
  • Daz555Daz555 Posts: 4,040
    Horrible dirty busses belching black clouds in my face. I really hate that.

    Generally though my main annoyance is dangerous overtaking whilst I'm out on the road bike. Too close and too fast.
    You only need two tools: WD40 and Duck Tape.
    If it doesn't move and should, use the WD40.
    If it shouldn't move and does, use the tape.
  • CygnusCygnus Posts: 1,879
    Bus drivers who think they're driving a car and start to pull in too soon.
  • rayjayrayjay Posts: 1,384
    This chap wound his window down at the stop lights and started saying how nice the weather is.....what's that all about.
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