LETTER: When cars and bicycles collide, in Squamish | Squamish Chief

LETTER: When cars and bicycles collide, in Squamish

Recently, a car closed within inches of me on my bicycle as I approached the intersection where Mamquam Road divides into Government Road and by cutting me off forced me into the turn against the car’s passenger side. 

As the car moved on, I fell hard on my left side. 

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The driver commented that I must have been in a blind spot. 

Although a blind spot might explain unawareness of a cyclist being struck on the turn, it does not explain the car coming so close from behind before taking the turn, especially given the slow down from the current work on Government Road.

I was fortunate in that my helmet protected my head and X-rays of the elbow, shoulder, and pelvis did not indicate fractures. It may take some time, but I’ll heal and get back to riding. 

The lapse on the driver’s part could have resulted in far worse consequences.

I would like my experience to be a reminder to Squamish drivers of the need to be extremely vigilant to the presence of cyclists who share our roads. 

I have ridden these roads nearly every day for the past many months. 

During that time I have seen all manner of cyclists: mountain bikers, roadies, those with tots on board or towed behind, commuters going to or from work, youngsters headed to school or home, novices to accomplished riders, and elders seeking exercise. 

Bike paths bear some of the load.  However, shopping venues, workplaces and schools are not all reachable on paths, and roads such as Government Road that reach out to northern valleys are popular with riders seeking longer routes. 

While the risks to cyclists are apparent, drivers also face risks. Who among us would wish to bear the burden of causing an accident?

John Hughes


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