Many readers have written in about the tension between pedestrians and cyclists on pavements. A lot of the problem boils down to the needs of cyclists and those of pedestrians.
First, the environment has changed. There are now more vehicles on the roads, forcing cyclists, for their own safety, to take the next best option - pedestrian paths.
Furthermore, innovation has brought a new range of motorised transport competing for space with the cyclist, hence a greater demand for space. More elderly people and those with physical disabilities are using motorised transport, such as motorised wheelchairs.
The high cost of cars has forced many to look for alternative modes of transport, such as bicycles.
The limited space on roads and pavements for an increasing number of users has resulted in the need to share common spaces. This has resulted in accidents between cyclists and pedestrians, as well as between cyclists and vehicles on the road.
We need to rethink how we manage the limited space to meet the requirements of all users. The law prohibiting cyclists on pavements may need a relook, as changes in the road environment put many cyclists there in danger.
There needs to be an education programme to highlight problems facing each group of users, focusing on proper usage and etiquette to ensure safety for all.
There also needs to be proper enforcement to nab errant users.
Leong Kok Seng