Well, that one got you talking.

Last week we published a story about Rotorua cyclist Ian Guy, talking about the constant close calls he'd had riding around the city. In the most recent incident, a motorist verbally abused him before pushing him to the ground.

Harm Zuidmeer, of the Rotorua Cycle Action Group, said it was the norm for cyclists not to be seen at intersections and for them to be passed too closely by cars.

He had had to "eject himself from his bike and jump up on to the kerb" recently after a bus got too close.

Advertisement

People have taken to social media and letters to the editor to have their say on this issue - and they are not shy in expressing what they think.

On Facebook, cyclists were called names and arrogant and one commenter even said until cyclists paid warrant or rego or insurances they should "get off the road when a car is coming or get what you deserve". That was echoed by others who felt cyclists had less right to be on the road then cars.

But others agreed local drivers also needed to up their game.

One commenter said he had been commuting since he was 15 in major cities such as Paris, London and Sao Paulo, but had never experienced such reckless behaviour from drivers as he had in Rotorua.

So who's right?

It's not black and white. Yes there are some cyclists who make life hard for themselves - and those driving past - by riding two abreast or straying further out into the road than they need to. As a driver I have seen this.

But there are also cyclists who are doing their best to stay safe and keep out of the way of cars - yet some motorists still don't see them, or don't give them enough space when there is no reason not to. As an occasional bike rider, I have seen this too.

One thing that is black and white is that all users need to learn to share the road better. Cyclists have as much right to be on the road as cars - to argue otherwise is in my view ridiculous.

A bit of respect and courtesy - on all sides - would go a long way.