Dedicated Bicycle Lanes?

August 21, 2012

Everyone who follows my blog probably knows that I have been an avid cyclist for yonks. Even happen to skipper one of the most disciplined bicycle teams back home in Singapore (zero accident! Not even so much as one!). So most of you would probably expect me to weigh in, in favor a provisioning dedicated lanes for cyclist. Sorry, no such luck.

First of all let me just share with all of you as an insider some of my views concerning bicycle fatalities on Singapore roads – while some may be attributed to negligent motorist. Many based on my personal experience are undoubtedly caused by cyclist who have absolutely no idea of road safety awareness – and what I can only describe as a general laziness and bochapness to prioritize a safety first culture in cycling – and the reason is very simple most bicycle clubs in Singapore are really led by people who simply have no appreciation of managing risk on two wheels – from what I am able to make out, except for a handful of bicycle teams in Singapore. Most bicycle teams are generally ambivalent about safety. Till off course somebody gets flattened like Prata. Then the great huholala begins. 

This bochapness towards rooting a SAFETY CULTURE is to prevalent in Singapore. Most bicycle teams believe it or not, don’t even bother to carry a first aid kit with them. Or for that even see the need to nominate a medic, safety officer or scouts who should ride ahead of the pack to ensure the convoy is ALWAYS visible and safe. And now they want a dedicated bike lane!

I am sorry. I just don’t see the flow of logic here. As IMHO most cycling teams just haven’t really don’t enough to prioritize safety. The way I see it, they should stop deflecting the blame to roads, bollards, cats, housewifes who have no business driving SUV’s and work to get their house in order FIRST! Then and ONLY then, should they talk about dedicated lanes for cyclist.

As it is, it’s premature to even have a serious discussion on whether the cycling community will benefit from a dedicate lane.

Now, if this doesn’t go down well. Just roll on the carpet with the punches. I promise to be nice to all of you tomorrow in my next blog entry. 

As what I am really doing here is simply calling a spade a spade.

Darkness 2012


“Hello, don’t go around disrespecting me! Now if you do that. Then why don’t you send your best rider to Bukit Timah. Wait underneath the big tree just off Brinjai Road. We go two rounds through woodcutter full speed. Me and your golden boy. Only understand this! I’ll whip the shit out of him. After that you become my water boy. Look here! All of you have your heads buried in the hairy arse of Togoparts. Wake up and smell the bitumen boys!

Then maybe you can tell me whether I am talking through my seat post about cycling road safety. The way I see it, most of you are just really interested in bombing out full speed. As for safety its really just a giant abstraction. We all know that. So don’t try to sell me this as if I just walked into the shop for the very first time in my life. Hey, you are talking to a lau chaiu here. You’re talking to dead serious bad ass professionals here! And that’s not all. I haven’t finished yet.

Like I said, there are many issues that needs to be worked out by the cycling fraternity in Singapore. The way I see it. 50% of the riders on the road. Have absolutely no business to be there in the first place. They don’t an apprentice system for someone to show them the ropes. As for the really capable riders. I happen to believe many of them have ego issues. And they’re really just setting a terrible example for new blood who enter this sport. All they really seem to want to do is show off how big and bullet proof their guli’s are. No wonder the body count is so fucking high on the road in Singapore. I blame the team leader for this. Yes, you heard me, he should be sent to a firing squad! Sure there are times when we can all agree an accident can be traced to some blind auntie driving a SUV. But in most cases, it boils down to simple human error. In other words, sloppy discipline and a failure to manage risk effectively along with perhaps lousy leadership.

I am sorry if this stings. I so sorry, if it even goes down like a ton of bricks. But that’s really my personal take on the issue. And you’ve got to bear in mind. I speak for the love of the sport of cycling. But I think we really need to be honest about how fucked up things really are inhouse wise. I mean why can’t cycling in Singapore be like climbing. We all rarely ever get to put anyone in the body bag when it comes to climbing. Why? Because the SAFETY FIRST culture is so dominant in the sport. Everyone knows what they are supposed to do. And its double and triple checked! If someone dies then the blame falls squarely on the leader. There is really no scope for negotiations. So tell me why is cycling so different? Why should it be a special case? With even a special lane to go with it?

Like I said, I blame the skipper. Coming to think of it, Where is the fucking leader?????? Bring him here! If you don’t like it, then you can shout as much as you want. And call me all sort of unmentionable things. Only bear in mind, I didn’t step off a banana boat. Neither am I just another arm chair pontificator – seen it all, even got the T shirt to prove it. Want me to take a drop off at 20 meters…sorry, that’s not high enough for me…fish for 40 maybe …no sweat. And that’s exactly how I am going to call it. Poor discipline. Bad leadership and a failure to prioritize safety.

These deficits need to be worked on. And I don’t think it pays to outsource it to government. As whatever they do gets politicised. So the last thing I want to see is the sport of cycling getting associated with the PAP.

Now if someone of you think that I am talking rot here – then none of you in my opinion deserve to even ride a bicycle on the road. You should all be on tricycles in a fairground. So take some responsibility here lah – don’t be silly and childish.

As this is a problem. And if some of you don’t get right down to the brass tacks of getting the team members to take safety seriously. Or even see the need to enforce discipline. Or even see the wisdom of what I am saying here. Then you can even have the whole road all to yourself. But that ain’t going to change a bloody fucking thing. As people will still get mowed down like daisies. As no one seems very interested to take responsibility for this perpetual fuck up! Like I said, the Singaporean cycling fraternity really needs to get their house into ship shape first. Then and ONLY then do you ask for a dedicate lane. You have my word. I will support that proposition. We will support it. But as it is. It just doesn’t make one molecule of sense – and my fear is, if we support this, many people, including cyclist are simply going to think, we are all either stupid or brain dead! Either way, we will just come across as people who make noise and talk absolutely no sense at all!

Like I said, I am sorry if I came across as a plank in the beginning. But you people have to learn abit of respect here. After all.  All I am doing here is calling a spade a spade. I sumpah!”

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