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Cyclists in Berlin

09/06/2003, peter fieback, berlin
  Among the important European Capitals Berlin has apparently the most cyclists in the city. Therefore the accidents with cyclists are relative high.

In Berlin it is up to date to drive a bike. It is a good value alternative to a car and to public transport. It can also save you a lot of time.
Corresponding to the high rate of cyclists the traffic accidents with bikes are also high. In my acquaintance four persons had an accident last year.
Since 1999 the number of accidents has increased. Last week the police checked about 10000 cyclists and they gave them 2860 tickets because of traffic offences and unroadworthy bikes. Unfortunately many cyclists are driving very chaotically.
Last Sunday a cyclist in front of my car suddenly turned left without a sign and without getting into left lane. Only my low speed prevented an accident. The cyclist called me an idiot and thought he was in the right but my three passengers also blame him. He escaped with no more than a fright after he had made a little scratch to my right wing.

comments [2]


Good ol' fat America - 09/06/2003, bridget gethins, richmond
We, Americans are trying so hard to find out why are we getting ssoooooooo fat??? As I waddled to my car, trying to decide if I needed a snack at the "MickyD's drive through window.(Drive-through so you don't even have to walk to the counter to pick up this fatting food just stay in the car) I was wondering what can I do to lose weight!!!!! What exercise program can I adopt to lose these unwanted pounds!? I drove around Richmond looking at the parks and lovely gardens wondering -what do those trees look like up close?? So I drove my car over the field and right next to the tree- so I could roll down my window and touch the tree- suddenly I wanted to get out of my car and hug this living thing!! So, I grabbed the door handle to push the door open- but I couldn't get the door to open! I WAS STUCK! This big tree had pinned me in my car! I pushed and pushed! The tree didn't budge. It stood strong against my car door. Frantic, I rolled up my car window and started the engine and sped away leaving track marks in the field. I came to a full stop at the road and looked back the tree, opened my glove compartment and grabbed my power bar and chewed. Trying to regain my strength to hug that tree. It was so tall and strong and didn't like my car- I'm good at reading character and the minds and of someone's or living thing's mind. It is a gift. After my second power bar- the energy snack- I opened the car door and eased my belly from under the steering wheel and stepped out of the car. I stopped to catch my breath. Again, I looked at the tree and this time it was calling me to come and visit. I was afraid and nervous- what does this tree want? I started walking toward the tree. After serval steps, I broke for camp and snack time. This is when I knew I had truly left my car- I had no place to find my snacks! Would I parish without my car and snacks?? It had been five minutes since I left my car- WHAT was I in for? WHAT was I thinking?? Do I return to my car? My head was spinning. I decided to sit down and the strangest thing happened- I found myself laying on the grass looking up at he sky and I could see that this tree had branches that reached out far from its trunk and sun was sparkling through the tree's leaves and it so refreashing and energizing! I felt great!! I layed there I don't know how long- but I do know I was smiling the whole time and when I sat up I turned the tree and understood- this where Mother Earth is giving her lasting and refreahing life and I jumped up and ran toward the tree and wrapped my arms around her. The embrace seemed to stand still in time. But, then I peacefully slid to the ground and sat under the tree. Feeling th air and seeing all that lived around the tree. It grew dark. And I realized everything had changed. I stood and thanked the tree for this blessed repass and started walking home knowing that as I walked firmly planted to the earth I was already home.
What doew this have to do with bikes?? I WANT A BIKE! I am trying to get out of my car!

Like Berlin...like Lagos - 09/06/2003, kabatinisoftouch@yahoo.com

Talking about bikes, I guess those of us from Nigeria will ahve a lot to tell you about this . Not only are motor-bike,motor-cycles ...which are popularly reffered to as 'okadas' , a commmon sight in Lagos and other states in Nigeria , it has also become one of the major mode of commercial transportation in and around the cities . Personally , I ride on 'okada's' primarily daily ., except I have such a long distance (which at times , I take bikes too;depending on my urgency) as my main mode of movement within lagos . This is necessitated by the fact that the traffic congestion in lagos is actually a nightmare fro any motorist . Lagos without traffic is NOT lagos . Neccesity , trhey say , is the mother of invention and I guess, that was how these bikes entered into the transpot system.
I almost laughedc when I saw your statistics of accident(four persons last year ). I tell you , major accidents by bikes in LAgos alone exceeds the one thousand yearly . Tjis is aside from minor incidents where the ride3r and his customer don't have major injuries . I have a friend who had an 'okada' accident five years ago , spent two years recuperating and right now , walks with a walking stic k and a limp. That is how bad it is . This is a common reccurence and I wonder how I've been able to avoid a mojor crash on bike . well, I guess , I don't mince words immediately I notice the biker is rough . But, what do we do .Traffic offences are too infinitesimal and I swear , a lot of you guys will grin with envy when they see the kind of manouvres,antics and all sorts , these riders do with their bike . It's like a bike-trapeze . Well , I guess we have diufferent needs for this so-called bikes .


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