Gladstone cyclist Chris Hughes says motorists are becoming more reckless in how they drive near bike riders.
Gladstone cyclist Chris Hughes says motorists are becoming more reckless in how they drive near bike riders. David Sparkes

Cyclists demand respect on road

CYCLISTS in Gladstone are becoming increasingly frustrated by motorists putting their lives in danger.

It is becoming a recurring topic of conversation for the town’s two-wheelers, who say the situation is getting worse.

“Our biggest concern is a lot of people don’t have respect for bike riders on the road,” said David McIntosh, owner of Gladstone Bicycle Centre.

“I’ve been in Gladstone for 20 years, and 20 years ago you could ride the road and have (more respect).

“There seems to be a lot of people coming to town now that don’t know what goes on locally.

“They just want to get out and get their job done.

"But at the same time, they’ve got to respect the people that live here.”

He said there were a number of problems with motorists’ behaviour around Gladstone.

“They go too fast up past you, they cut you off, they don’t give you an inch on the road, and that’s our biggest concern.”

Mr McIntosh rides in a group called the Red Skins.

“We’re a group of riders that when we do ride, we do our best to obey the law.

“When we can ride double we do, and when we think it’s unsafe, we go back to single. We don’t just hog the road.”

Hoon driving seems to be on the increase in Gladstone, according to cyclists who say they are seeing more and more burnouts and reckless driving.

Another rider at his wits’ end with motorists’ behaviour is Chris Hughes, who rides with the M1 cycling club.

“It’s probably getting worse,” he said. “We’ve had to change our routes a few times from what we used to do because it’s getting more traffic now.

"You get a few d***heads yelling at you (from cars).”

Mr Hughes said the problem is not only the growing number of cars, but the deteriorating attitude of drivers.

He said motorists don’t seem to realise that cyclists are subject to the same rights and responsibilities on the road.

“People don’t understand that by law you are allowed to ride two-abreast and if there’s a double lane, you are allowed to take up a whole lane,” he said.