A friend of mine who works in the A & E department of our local Hospital once told me that whenever there is a full moon they are sure to have a busy night . There was a full moon over the weekend and they almost had an even busier time with the driving antics of some of the wear-wolfs behind the wheels of their cars and trucks when coming into contact with any group of cyclists .
The Rules of the road state that a car should allow at least a car width when overtaking a cyclist and that cyclists are allowed to travel two abreast . It also states that no overtaking maneuver should be undertaken on a continuous white line or on a ghost island , especially approaching a fixed traffic Island . These rules were completely discarded yesterday .
We shall do this chronologically ;
At about 9.40 the ‘racing group’ from Carrick was passing through Kilsheelan when wear-wolf number one made his presence felt . The group of eleven were just approaching the middle of Kilsheelan village when a ‘loodar’ in a Peugeot who must have mistaken the grotto in Kilsheelan for the Arc de triomphe in Paris began blowing his horn and reving his engine . He then attempted to overtake the group approaching a fixed traffic Island . Even a Ducati motorbike could not have pulled off the maneuver that he was attempting let alone a banged up Peugeot 406 . He was then forced to pull in to the middle of the group and missed Geoff by less than an inch . Luckily Geoff had his run of three last week and disaster was avoided . Not content with almost bringing down the rear half of the group he then proceeded to pass the rest of the group approaching the next fixed Island and once more swerved in on top of the front of the group just missing them by millimetres .
I’m sure that more than one shop would have had the Sunday World if it was sold out , if indeed that was what his huge panic was about .
About ten minutes after this incident the larger early group were after cresting the hill of knocknamullaigh and were dropping down towards the beehive when wear-wolf number two appeared on the scene . At the time there was a pretty dense fog and we were surprised to hear the roar of a big labouring diesel engined truck creeping up our outside . Suddenly on this two lane secondary road there appeared a fifty seven seater bus coming head on for the truck . The truck was a Daf and the driver was certainly daft when he spotted the bus and tried to steer in on top of the group . The bus was forced to come to a complete stop as was the line of traffic behind it . Most drivers put their hazard lights on assuming the worst . Luckily no one was hurt , no thanks to the truck driver and he slotted into the middle of the group to get by the bus .
Now at this stage any normal person would have gotten a fright and would have been shaken by the experience , but not our daft wear-wolf . Next thing he did was to overtake the rest of the group on a continuous white line approaching a bend . Yes we really came across a rocket scientist there .
This seems to be more than enough excitement and stress for one days relaxing training spin but our story doesn’t end there .
Wear-wolf number three made his appearance around four and a half hours later when Martin and Brian were on their way back down towards Carrick after another epic spin . Along the Miloko straight this Kimi Raikonen wannabe decided to overtake the lads with a car coming against him and managed to clip Martin with his wing mirror !
Once again it ran in threes .
The roads surely are more dangerous with an increase in Irish car ownership form 1.2 million ten years ago to 2.2 million today but this is not the only reason . People now have a multitude of labour and time saving devices , but seem to have less time and are always in a hurry . Everyone else on the road is seen as an opponent in a real life game of cat and mouse , and it is only after the fact when a driver has seriously hurt or even killed someone that the realisation dawns as to the insignificance of the ‘ big hurry’ .
As the Captain on Hill street blues used to say : ‘ Be careful out there !’