Sunday, January 18, 2009

Be Careful Where you Read your news

link to photo

A UK insurance company says that bicycle riders are having lots more accidents these days.  Cycling Weekly says the information is wrong.

Why would the insurance company provide the wrong information. Because the more bike riders around, the less people use their cars -  and fewer people need auto insurance.

The data from the insurance company was posted on a major UK newspaper website.  No one questioned the accuracy of the statistics, until a reader demanded the article be removed.

This brings me to another issue, about milk - yes, the kind you drink- unrelated in a sense, but totally connected if you think about truth in advertising.

Did you know that there are studies indicating that children you drink cows milk in infancy have a significantly higher risk for TYPE 1 Diabetes?  Did you know that milk causes all sorts of other problems in people, including hay fever, digestive problems, headaches?  Just think about it a minute.  Why isn't this information out in the open?  

Instead we see these commercials with famous movie stars wearing a white ring around their mouths.  Especially for those skinny females, do you think they drink milk?  I bet not, they probably think it is too fattening...

Thursday 15th January 2009 - Cycling Weekly

CTC – the UK's national cyclists' organisation has completely refuted claims by car insurance company LV= (Liverpool Victoria) that “inexperienced cyclists taking to the roads in the last six months have resulted in a 29% increase in road accidents involving cyclists”.

The figure appears to be no more than the difference in casualty numbers for cyclists between summer and winter. LV='s estimate of the number of collisions involving cyclists is over nine times higher than official figures and is based on a serious miscalculation of the number of cyclists in Britain. CTC has dismissed the figure as nothing more than a scaremongering publicity stunt.

Roger Geffen, CTC's Campaigns and Policy Manager, said: “This is Mickey Mouse research and flies in the face all official published statistics on cycling. There is plenty of evidence showing that cycling gets safer the more cyclists there are. In London there has been a 91% increase in cycle use on the capital's main roads since 2000, and a 33% reduction in cycle casualties in roughly the same period”.

He added: “CTC has been researching cycle safety for over a century. Manipulating statistics for a PR stunt wastes the time of the people who took part in the survey. By demonising cyclists and scaring people into staying in their cars, it also undermines the efforts of charities like CTC to encourage more cycling and improve road safety for all”.

Singling out cyclists as a law-breaking group is discriminatory and serves only to create aggression and conflict between road users. This is highly irresponsible behaviour for an insurance company professing to care about road safety.

CTC has contacted LV= to set out our reasons why we think their figures are incorrect and have requested that they either revise them or withdraw their press release titled “Road users warned over inexperienced cyclists” dated January 16, 2009.

from Cycling Weekly

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