I was shocked and horrified to hear about an incident that happened on the Sunshine Coast this week.
Some unthinking lout strung a garden hose across a road as a prank against cyclists.
It bloody well worked – the garden hose caught a 56-year-old cyclist off guard, flinging him from his bike and badly injuring him in the process. There are reports the man has broken his collarbone, which is a desperately painful brake to live through, involving months of difficult recovery.
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My first thought upon hearing this news was: thank God he wasn’t killed.
My second thought was: what the front door is wrong with people? Who would do such a thing?
Furthermore, what would have happened if they had accidentally killed a cyclist who got caught up in their hose – could they have been charged with murder? After all, their prank was clearly pre-mediated… and it clearly designed to cause trouble.
This is right up there with dropping large rocks off a highway overpass: it’s dangerous, monolithically stupid and carries the potential to actually permanently damage people’s lives. Including the so-called “prankster”.
Not for nothing, I should clarify that I don’t myself ride bikes. I’ve never been a cyclist, and to be honest, when I see a pod of them riding along the road near me, I get a little nervous.
Nervous, because I don’t want to accidently swerve in the wrong direction and injure them.
But that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve to be on the roads.
Cyclists have just as much right as vehicle drivers do, to get from A to B.
And they’re in the more vulnerable position: we have a tonne or two of metal between us, them and the pavement. They’re relying on kneepads and a helmet to protect them from the elements.
Police have asked any residents living along Palm Dr, Tombarra St, Pettigrew St and Kalinda Ave in Mooloolaba who may have CCTV or dashcam vision depicting anything suspicious, to contact police. Any clues as to the person responsible for this incredibly dangerous act will be followed up vigorously, as the police believe the offender “might have been up to other mischief in the area”.