Are our roads dangerous? Shanmugam said, and I quote from the Today paper, ‘I have been noticing that there is increased amount of unsafe driving on our roads…I wonder if it is the case that we are simply noticing this more, or if indeed our driving habits have become worse. And Today had a table showing that the number of cyclists and pillion riders who died or were injured in accidents were 589 for 2009, 573 for 2010 and 500 for 2011. The number for Jan-Jun 2012 is 190 and simple projection will see this number to be about 190 plus or minus a bit in the next 6 months, or about 380 to 400 for the year.
Ahem, I must say that based on these numbers, the number of incidents is getting lesser, not increased.
Nonetheless, the number of death is still too high for a casual recreational activity with one or two death daily. It is the most dangerous sports in terms of number of casualties. It should be discouraged or even banned. The number of death is unnecessary and not worth the risk.
Many cyclists refuse to admit this fact that our roads are just too dangerous for cyclists. They are not only narrow, other than the highways, the drivers, the big buses and lorries, are often driven by speed demons. Many of these heavy vehicles are driven by the lowly educated, the foreigners with their third world mentality and habits, and pose just too high a risk for our cyclists.
To add to the problem, some cyclists think that drivers are as well mannered and safety conscious as them, and would drive with care. To further add to the deadly delusion, some of the cyclists thought number is safety and would cycle abreast in twos and threes or more when in a big group, ignoring the right of motorists. They are simply inviting for trouble. A little mistake by the drivers, intentional, accidental or trying to frighten the cyclists to cycle single file would send them flying to heaven.
At this point in time, our road infrastructure is just not suitable for cyclists, not even single file. Best to just keep to the parks, connectors and housing estates. Venture to the main roads at your own risk. The hobby or sports, the attractive sports attire and gadgets to don on, are not worth the risk of losing arms and legs and lives. Don’t be silly and don’t be stubborn. Our roads are not meant for cycling.