Walker Vs. Gutierrez
I’m still digesting all the information from a post over at Ian Walker’s blog concerning a reaction to his bicycle overtaking study, but I can’t shake from my mind the old Hank Kissinger saw, ‘academic disputes are so bitter because the stakes are so small.’
I would side with Ian Walker (who of course is featured in Traffic) in his assertion of cross-cultural differences. Nothing in the traffic world (fatalities, laws, norms, etc.) translates easily across borders — not even state borders. The U.K. driving population, the landscape, the safety rate, the regulations, etc., have little to do with U.S. traffic culture. And while I find the Gutierrez work interesting, I can’t also help thinking it comes shrouded in a militantly ‘vehicular cycling’ agenda — I really can’t imagine many civilians out there would even feel comfortable in the first instance riding on that road on which they’re riding (in L.A., where cyclist-car relations have been less than rosy), much less taking up big amounts of road space. Which points to a larger sort of question: Is this what we should be worried about to begin with? Is a cycling culture going to be built on a game of inches from cars overtaking at high speeds? I can’t imagine these are top-of-mind concerns in the Netherlands or Denmark (but I could be wrong).
But like I said, I’m still digesting, only wading into a very deep pool here (Google ‘vehicular cycling’) and primarily wanted to highlight the exchange.
This entry was posted on Friday, April 3rd, 2009 at 7:23 am and is filed under Cyclists, Etc.. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.