Bus Drivers can be considerate.

There are a lot of posts about bad bus drivers. I thought I would add a post about a considerate bus driver.

On Thursday 22 March I was cycling along London Road A118 from Romford to Chadwell Heath. At the beginning of the length of road I came upon a bus going in my direction, I think an 86, but not sure. 

We played give way to each other along the stretch of road. I overtook the bus when it stopped while the driver waited for me. The bus overtook me if there was room before he stopped.

Eventually we came to a bus stop where there was not quite enough room for him to overtake and pull in before stopping but he was just in front of me as he though he had room to overtake. He stopped to allow me to undertake him before he moved into the bus stop.

I don't normally undertake large vehicles, especially those that may be pulling in so I waved him into the busstop.

When he had stopped at the busstop I pulled out to overtake. Guess what a car driven blared his horn at me for pulling out in front of him even though the car was stationary in a traffic queue waiting to overtake the bus.

So thanks to the bus driver and shame on you car driver.

This post was edited by raymondox at 8:08am 31 March 2015.

Replies

  • By smsm1 at 11:10pm 24 March 2012

In my experience I've found bus drivers to be the most considerate drivers that I've come across, it is a bit of give and take. For example, I occasionally hold the traffic to let them out, and then they are more happy to be kind back. I've only come across one incident in the past 4 years in London with an inconsiderate bus driver, who was honking his horn behind me while I was slip streaming a bus in front. I've slipstreamed buses many times in the past and never had an issue. Listening to the engine roar helps a lot in knowing what the driver is about to do, which you can't hear from the cab of the bus behind. His honking was more likely to injure me than the slipstreaming.

Slipstreaming big vehicles at speed clearly has some risk, but at least that risk is confined to yourself.

LCC staff had significant input into the London bus driver training programme, providing advice on the video training drviers receive.

We'd love to see all bus drivers have on-bike cycle training, so they're properly aware of the challenges that cyclists face every day.

Used to occasionaly leave rubber on the bottom trim on the backs of the No. 65s, slip-streaming them on the Kew Road; circa 1956?

Wiser, perhaps, and in less of a rush to get to school, these days.

Although I enjoyed collecting signatures at the School of Oriental and African Studies with classmates from LCC last night.

But one of the joys of learning to ride properly, guided by LCC, is that I can make time for eye-contact with bus-drivers, and have managed to compliment them on occasion.

Just to be clear I wasn't slipstreaming and don't partake of this facility.

More broadly, I think the vast majority of road users are considerate - my frustration when other road users make mistakes or are inconsiderate is tempered by the humbling recognition that I make mistakes, and that most times the pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, car drivers, taxi drivers, bus drivers and lorry drivers around me respond patiently while I sort myself out. While it's easy to have near misses, given that I cycle pretty far every day for work and leisure, it's rare for anyone to be aggressive.

This week I had a near miss that was entirely my fault, but also particularly unusual in that the taxi driver involved responded agressively (deliberately accelerating and aiming at me). I'd even wondered about running a confessional blog where I own up to mistakes like that, to encourage me to work on being more considerate, giving bigger margins for safety, etc. We, as cyclists, can also lead on treating travel as the social activity it is, which depends on everyone's co-operation. You've given a wonderful example.

  • By tbl at 1:44pm 24 April 2012

Jondclarke;

I applaud your idea of a confessional blog, I would certainly add to it. I consider myself a safe cyclist, however I know I've made mistakes, although never intentionally.

I've covered in the region of 12,000 miles in my 3 years of cycling in London and twice have had incidents with vehicles, neither of which were my fault, and were thankfully very minor. All of the rest of the incidents have been with pedestrians and on one of those occasions someone took a swing at me, whislt I was riding past as I trundled through a pedestrian crossing - I wasn't paying attention, this was definitely my fault.

The other 4 or 5 pedestrian incidents are usually people who are either a.) listening to music and not paying attention, b.) are in an apparent rush, or c.) BOTH!!

 

I have to also say in line with the original thread of this that I meet the path of many a bus route on my journey to work and find bus driving nothing but considerate. For instance, I find that if a bus has stopped to drop off/pick up passengers, so long as you pull out wide enough to overtake they invariably wait for you to pass. 

They also appreciate a thumbs up, or some form of thank you when they give you the room to pass by.

  • By Stily1 at 5:52am 26 April 2012

Nice thread. Good to be reminded that everyone makes mistakes, and I also do agree that, despite the stereopypes, most road users are in fact pretty considerate and safe. My principal issues have to do with government priorities (or lack thereof) in terms of road design and maintenance. You would think that by now London would have figured out how to drain the roads.....but no......flooding abounds. How can this be?

I find an interesting gradation in consideration in paralel with "professionalism", if you will. London city bus drivers are quite good, as are the black cab drivers, but this seems to change when you consider the open-top tourist bus drivers and Addison Lee cab drivers.....not so conderate nor professional. Only my un-substantiated observations.

Now, scooterists, they're selfish!

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