As one who’s bicycled in Brussels, I found this surprising because riding a bike was pretty convenient as far as I was concerned. I regularly rode from my commune in Boisford in the southeast part of the city by the forest to work near Park Cinquintanaire, on the side away from the European Union buildings. It was pretty much straight bike path the whole way. I never dealt with much traffic, even when I took an alternate route and went down side streets.
But to hear these guys talk, Brussels is a bicyclist’s nightmare.
Obviously, they have never been to the States.
But I do agree with them in one regard. The automobile drivers in Brussels are insane. And their insanity is encouraged by the law.
They have this amazingly stupid traffic rule called “priorité à droite.” That means that if your driving straight down a road a car approaching from the right has the right of way.
Crazy, right? But that’s not the absolutely psychopathic beauty of traffic in Brussels. Not every street has a stoplight or stop signs. In any direction.
The director of the city’s traffic management agency was once asked why that was, and his response was: “traffic signs cost a lot of money!”
So, drivers from sane parts of the world were constantly driving along and getting hit on their right side because “priorité à droits.” That’s why you see so many car accidents in this video. The law encourages them.
But I drove in Brussels for 6 years and never got into a car accident. I had to move to England for that to happen. There, I was going along straight and go hit on the left. Student driver. My car, which I bought in Brussels, took a beating in England.
And note that the video says Brussels has 4 percent bicycle traffic. Compare that to the U.S.
Compared to the U.S., Brussels is overrun with bicyclists.