A bicycle advocate group says it is shocked and unsettled by the response to a video showing a driver running straight into a cyclist from behind.
Bicycle Queensland released the video as part of its White Helmet campaign to heal the rift between drivers and cyclists.
It shows cyclist Geoffrey James riding on a multi-lane road approaching an intersection and pedalling towards the sun, when a white car rapidly approaches from behind and crashes into him.
Mr James, lying on the road, then calls out for someone to “call the ambos, call the cops.”
The driver approaches Mr James and pleads with him, repeatedly offering him money.
“I’m really sorry man, I’ll pay you,” the driver says.
“Please man, I’m running late for work…nothing happened man, I’ll pay you.”
‘Hahaha die cyclists die’
The footage, posted on Facebook, drew plenty of comments, many of which were critical of cyclists — some even violent.
“Hahaha die cyclists die hahaha the middle of the lane is not your domain,” Nicholas Trace posted on the Courier-Mail Facebook page.
Others implied the cyclist was at fault.
“I don’t think anyone needs anymore human decency in regards to this incident. The dead shit bike rider needed some common sense that’s the issue here. Guarantee this idiot was riding in the middle of the road holding everyone up in peak hour,” Brett Buckley wrote.
Kahn Sheenan suggested cyclists use the footpath rather than the road.
“I’m so over cyclists and their abusive crap because people disagree with them. Grow up and use some common sense. It is not illegal in QLD to ride on the footpath, so if it is dangerous and there is no bike lane ride on the footpath… simple,” he wrote.
‘Unsettling and shocking to say the least’
Bicycle Queensland chief executive Anne Savage said the response to the video was stunning.
“The blowback from the extreme fringe has been quite surprising, unsettling and shocking to say the least,” Ms Savage said.
“Some of the negativity that we’re seeing is really just an example of an extreme fringe and is not representative of the majority or their view on this.
“But it does demonstrate very clearly that the issue we have called out is real and dedicated strategies are needed to address it.”
Ms Savage said Bicycle Queensland was determined to continue the campaign.
“The evidence is clear, Queenslanders want to get on their bikes — we need the whole community to support us in making that happen,” she said.
“In relation to cycling, serious injury crashes have been increasing by 8 per cent every year, leaving hundreds of cyclists severely traumatised by the experience.”
The White Helmet campaign encourages riders who want to show they are committed to sharing the road, obeying the law and respecting fellow road users to fix a piece of white fabric or a white label to their bicycle or clothing.
Mr James said he was not pleased by the response to the footage.
“The video has sparked a lot of division in the community, even between some cyclists,” Mr James said.
But he will continue cycling, and respecting motorists.
“I don’t hold any grudges against motorists as long as they show the respect cyclists are entitled to.”