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'Kill a biker' row: New riders at risk

2014-02-18 14:20

CALL TO ACTION: Wheels24 reader GERT BOTHA believes that new riders are at risk on SA’s roads. Image: AFP


Wheels24 GERT BOTHA is outraged by the 'kill a biker' row but claims that both riders and bikers are to blame for road rage incidents.

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - Motoring journalist Thegandra Naidoo has been "asked to leave the employ" of ABR Magazine with immediate effect, after making insensitive comments on social media following a biker’s death in a road rage incident.

ABR Magazine announced on Tuesday (Feb 18) that Naidoo has been asked to leave the employ of the company with immediate effect.

The announcement came after the biking community and the general public expressed their outrage on social media due to Naidoo’s insensitive comments on Facebook on February 14. Naidoo's comments were in regard to a biker who was shot and killed in Johannesburg during a road rage incident with a driver.

Wheels24 reader GERT BOTHA shares his thoughts:

"This journo cannot be allowed another chance on these platforms as he should have known who he represents. He actually placed a death wish on all he represents, and quite frankly, he only posted an apology to save his career – well, that would be over in any case as he would never be taken in the same light as the other journalists.
These are the facts:
1 Since the e-toll came about, and with the new hikes in petrol prices, I noticed a tremendous increase in road users reverting to two-wheel transport;

2 As a fellow biker, working in the corporate world, I have learned not to judge, because the spectrum of bikers, have now spanned even further, from the old “bad” bikers, to doctors, Advocates, Bankers, IT developers etc, using bikes to families who started to use this as their only means of transport due to financial constraints;

3 Our challenge now is going to be on how to educate these 'new bikers' on how to travel safely in peak traffic, and surely we do not need “hate speech” comments from the non-biking community, feuding further antagonism;

4 I have been on both the receiving end of a biker driving into my vehicle due to another vehicle opening up their doors at the wrong place, and being bumped by motor vehicles whilst on my motorcycle;

5 Journalists have to understand that the apparent once off incidents mostly happens due to the fact that a few events took place before that, and that a biker is so much more exposed.

He is taking a risk, road users should not add to that risk, if they do not have the guts to ride bikes themselves, they should not attempt to intervene in a bikers route on the road, as the bikers just want to get past an carry on. They have no intention in having a wrestling match with a heavier vehicle. 

You should make this an example to other like-minded viewers of bikers as this can become a nasty trend."

Read more on:    south africa  |  road rage  |  ugc  |  bikes  |  your wheels24  |  reader

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