Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Petition on Cycle Lanes

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to pass legislation so that cyclists on cycle lanes accompanying main roads should not have to give way to traffic on joining minor roads.

Traffic on cycle lanes accompanying main roads are currently forced to give way to traffic joining the main road from a minor road, as well as the main road traffic turning into the minor road. On roads which are joined by many minor roads, cyclists are effectively forced to use the main road rather than the cycle lane in order not to waste time and endanger themselves at these nonsensical junctions. This negates the possible safety benefits of cycle lanes. We petition that cycle lanes should have the same rights of way as a lane of a main road, with traffic on joining minor roads forced to give way to both cyclists and vehicular traffic, thus making traveling on cycle lanes a safer (and quicker) method of transport.

If you would like to see a cycle lane accompanying a main road where cyclists are currently forced to give way to traffic joining the main road from a minor road, as well as the main road traffic turning into the minor road, have a ride along McMullen Road in Darlington where the fairly newly-created cycle lane forces cyclists to give way at every side road and car salesroom entrance.

I ride along McMullen Road once a fortnight and use the road rather than this cycle lane. While doing this, I can almost feel the car and truck drivers passing me muttering "use the effing cycle lane". I won't use the cycle lane. In it's current design, this cycle lane places me in more danger than being on the road whilst also enforcing drivers' attitudes that I shouldn't be on the road in the first place.

Sign the petition.


Steve said...

I'll be signing it. Didn't know there was a lane on McMullen Road though, has it only appeared in the last month or so?

Mike said...

Thanks Steve.

The bike Lane's been there for a while. It runs from just before Coombe Drive (Red Hall entrance) to the retail park. It's on the same side as the retail park.

It's not on the road, it's on the grass to the side and/or shared with pedestrians.

Steve said...

Ah, that explains why I missed it - I just stay on the road. When you're doing a 12 mile round-trip shopping run a little bit of cycle lane isn't really worth it.

Mike said...

I ride up McMullen Road every other Tuesday on my way to hurworth. I just stay on the road too.

But, cycle lanes do help less experienced cyclists gain confidence, and if I had one of my kids on the bike, I'd be on the cycle lane.

richardgrassick said...

I'm signing too. The cycle path along West Auckland Road is another obvious example.

Does this mean that it's illegal in the UK for local councils to build cycle paths that have priority at road junctions? Enough to make you want to declare regional UDI if it is!

Steve said...

Well, I guess thats something to discuss with our cycling councillor: although York seems to get away with them.

On a totally different subject, would you be interested in ride reports & routes? There's a few I might contribute that might generate more interest here than on my site.

Mike said...

I don't think it's illegal for them to have priority; the petition wants it making illegal not to give them priority.

Ride reports would be great. Perhaps just stick them on your site and let me know via email (mike NOSPAM tually AT gmail DOT com - adjust as is obvious)that you've added one and I'll link to it from here?

Steve said...

There's a response from the PM's office -

To summarise - no change.