Cyclists sound safety warning after close call

Cyclists Ross Forster and Jim Field are calling on motorists to look out for bike riders on the regionʼs roads.

Local cyclists are calling on motorists to take care on the roads after one too many close calls.

Maryborough cyclists Ross Forster, who has been riding for around 60 years, and Jim Field, a fellow avid cyclist, are experienced cyclists who have competed at world level.

The pair often ride on roads around the shire and said run-ins with motorists doing the wrong thing is a regular occurrence.

“I would say 99 percent of motorists are fantastic. If they can, they move right over the other side of the road,” Mr Forster said.

“It’s just this small one percent that don’t and you can’t disregard that because people can get killed.”

The inspiration for the pair to take action came after Mr Field experienced one of his closest calls on the road last month.

Mr Field was cycling along Timor Road at about 1 pm on January 10 when a vehicle roared past him at around 100 km/h, leaving what Mr Field estimated to be a 34 centimetre gap between his bike and the car.

While nothing usually comes of these incidents other than a nasty shock for the rider, Mr Field captured footage of the vehicle on small, dash-cam style cameras on the front and rear of his bike.

“The footage I captured showed the car didn’t even try to move over, its right wheel didn’t go over the centre line,” he said.

“There was no oncoming traffic or corners, there was plenty of room for them to safely move over.”

While Mr Field escaped the incident uninjured, he said since taking up cycling 12 years ago, these close calls have been a regular occurrence.

“This happens regularly, probably once every couple of weeks,” he said.

“If I wasn’t an experienced rider it could’ve been a lot worse, especially if it was a bigger vehicle.”

Mr Field and Mr Forster are now pushing for more awareness around the cameras for both cyclists and drivers, which they say can be a deterrent for bad behaviour.

For more on this story see Page 7 of The Advertiser, Tuesday, February 12

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