Tom Tilley joins cyclists as they brave some of Sydney's most brutal roads. Source: Seven's Spotlight.

The Psychology Behind Why Drivers Hate Cyclists

Tom Tilley, a confessed Mamil (middle-aged male in lycra), is travelling the country speaking to cyclists, researchers and drivers in the hope of improving safety for cyclists on our roads. His report on Seven’s Spotlight program aired last night, diving into ground-breaking research that shows an overwhelming number of drivers view cyclists as less than human.

“The less human people saw a cyclist…the more likely that person was to act aggressively towards them by cutting them off or throwing objects at them.”

Tom Tilley on Seven’s Spotlight

Sadly, one cyclist dies almost every week in Australia and that number is not going down.

In this episode of The Briefing, Tom talks with Dr Mark Limb, a researcher from Queensland’s University of Technology, who looks at the clothes or outfits cyclists wear and how that changes the perceptions of drivers.

“Lycra-based cyclists were perceived as the most inhuman.”

“Some studies show that drivers are largely frustrated by delays and things like that, that might be created by cyclists on the road. And that could be one of the reasons why, as a group, they’re not particularly popular.”

Subscribe to The Briefing, Australia’s fastest-growing news podcast on Listnr today. The Briefing serves up the latest news headlines and a deep dive into a topic affecting you. All in under 20 minutes.