Paranoid Cycling

Are you paranoid about any new rider in your group?

Do you fully expect the unknown or unsafe rider in your group to do something dumb?

Do you consciously avoid riding near certain people, even people you may like, when they are on a bicycle?

If you answered yes to one of the above, good for you.

If you answered yes to two of the above, I might ride with you.

If you answered yes to all the above, be of good feeling, paranoia pays.

What brought this on?

Week one…minor accident with the group…someone going very slow, not paying attention, falls. This is a safe rider who I would trust in a pace line.

Week two…banged up accident…another mostly safe rider stops paying attention, crosses wheels, goes boom and gets banged up.

Week three…major accident… rider 1 calls out “slowing or stopping”, new rider (with our group) stops but does not say anything, new rider behind him crashes, flies over the stopped rider and winds up with multiple fractures.

Ironically, week three was the day I handed out my latest rant “Riding Safely in a Group”.  Damn, I forgot to tell everyone to READ it. Duh.

No doubt, a dose of care or paranoia goes along way. Â Besides trying to be a good and safe rider we always need to evaluate those around us.

Yes, accidents that are truly unavoidable will happen. But, it seems to me, most of the cycling accidents are brought on by people changing their status (i.e. slowing or stopping) or riders just not paying attention what they are doing.