/ Cyclist challenges Conservative MP to commute by bike

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dale1968 - on 28 Dec 2012
mikehike on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to dale1968:
That fella's had a pretty bad time, enough to put many off riding a bike to work.
Good luck to him.
Martin W on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to dale1968: Seems more like an invitation than a "challenge", when you read the bulk of the article:

The 38-year-old company director has now asked Ealing Central and Acton MP Angie Bray, whose constituency covers part of his route, to cycle with him.

But that wouldn't be such a good headline, of course...

(By their logic, my g/f "challenged" me to pour her another glass of wine yesterday evening.)
highclimber - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to dale1968:

"I ride in cycle lanes,..."


i think this might be part of his problem. some cycle lanes i've used are in the most vulnerable places for the smallest road user!

I am trying to fathom out what the guy is trying to get the police to do by 'policing cycle lanes'?
Bob_the_Builder - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to highclimber:
>some cycle lanes i've used are in the most vulnerable places for the smallest road user!

Agreed!

I wish that police would ticket people who drive into the "bike bit" at the traffic lights. Is that policing bike lanes?

Ciro - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to highclimber:
> (In reply to dale1968)
>
> "I ride in cycle lanes,..."
>
>
> i think this might be part of his problem. some cycle lanes i've used are in the most vulnerable places for the smallest road user!

Yep, in London I avoid them like the plague - getting out into the traffic and dominating your lane doesn't guarantee you'll get to work in one piece, but it does make it more likely.
trouserburp - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:

I cycle and drive, honestly can't see the big problem with cars rolling a bit into the bike space at traffic lights.
They aren't moving so how is it dangerous? It's just a mild inconvenience. If they were scared of a fine and had to slam on the brakes every time the lights changed it would be far more dangerous.

Oncoming cars turning right across my lane, now that's worth shouting about. Or overtaking too close, failing to give way at a roundabout, opening car doors without looking...
doz generale - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:
> (In reply to Bob_the_Builder)
>
> I cycle and drive, honestly can't see the big problem with cars rolling a bit into the bike space at traffic lights.
> They aren't moving so how is it dangerous? It's just a mild inconvenience. If they were scared of a fine and had to slam on the brakes every time the lights changed it would be far more dangerous.
>

its dangerous as bikes now have to sit inside the traffic at lights because someone who cant judge his stopping distance or is too selfish to care is sat in their space. why do you think the bike space exists? to look prety?
highclimber - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to doz generale: The issue is that the line that separates these areas is such that if a motor vehicle crosses it, it is punishable by a fine of £30 (£60?) and 3 penalty points, or so I am lead to believe.
yesbutnobutyesbut - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to highclimber: There's a line at every set of traffic lights that you shouldn't cross. Some just happen to have a bike area in front of them. If motorists are unable to stop at the right place they/we deserve a fine!!
Ciro - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:
> (In reply to Bob_the_Builder)
>
> I cycle and drive, honestly can't see the big problem with cars rolling a bit into the bike space at traffic lights.
> They aren't moving so how is it dangerous? It's just a mild inconvenience.

The point of the advanced cycle box is to allow cyclists to move into a visible position in front of the traffic. The theory goes that this makes them safer when the lights change. If you have evidence that they are in fact as safe mixing it with the motor vehicles at the stop line, why are you wasting your time trying to convince the good citizens of UKC when you could be presenting that evidence to the government, so they can stop wasting our tax money on a pointless safety scheme?

> If they were scared of a fine and had to slam on the brakes every time the lights changed it would be far more dangerous.

If they read the highway code, they would understand that it's not necessary for them to stop if it might cause an accident:

https://www.gov.uk/light-signals-controlling-traffic

"AMBER means ‘Stop’ at the stop line. You may go on only if the AMBER appears after you have crossed the stop line, or are so close to it that to pull up might cause an accident."

Ignorance of one rule is not an excuse for ignoring another one.


Bob_the_Builder - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:

I agree that there are worse things, but the posts following explain a few reasons why the bike area is there. I would add that it gives a safe place for cyclists to wait in front of people turning left who don't notice them.

I mainly want police to notice because it is a highly visible offence that could be enforced much better.
Ciro - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:

> I mainly want police to notice because it is a highly visible offence that could be enforced much better.

I once saw the police on Holland Park Avenue in the morning, standing at the closest junction to the station, and at every cycle of the lights they went over to the drivers sitting in the advance cycle box and told them they shouldn't do that before allowing them on their way... that's the closest thing to a deterant I've seen.
Bob_the_Builder - on 28 Dec 2012
In reply to Ciro:

Better than nothing I suppose. I'm sure getting told off by a policeman will stop some people doing it for a while.
Bimbler - on 28 Dec 2012
Enforcing ASL is great IF the majority of (commuting type) cyclists behaved in a predictable and safe manner. Unfortunately most don't so until this issue is solved I don't see what real purpose this serves.
trouserburp - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:

Just ride around in front of them anyway.

The fine's only if you willingly go over it when there's a red light. Normally they're there because they were in a queue of traffic when the lights changed, which is absolutely ok and allowed. Sometimes they didn't have their jedi foresight engaged when the light changed on them, which is human. So lock up 99% of drivers and throw away the key, or get a grip and realise it's just a helpful guidance line and no harm has been done.
Ciro - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bimbler:
> Enforcing ASL is great IF the majority of (commuting type) cyclists behaved in a predictable and safe manner. Unfortunately most don't so until this issue is solved I don't see what real purpose this serves.

Indeed, that might help the cause... then again if the ASLs and other courtesies towards cyclists required by the highway code were observed by other users, cyclists might behave in a more predictable and safe manner...
Ciro - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:
> (In reply to Bob_the_Builder)
>
> Just ride around in front of them anyway.

You realise you can get fined for jumping a red light on a bike too right? I know it doesn't happen very often, but it has happened to a couple of people I know.

That aside, moving onto the junction tends to inconvenience pedestirans and cuts down the space between them and the traffic which the planners decided to put there for safety reasons.
>
> The fine's only if you willingly go over it when there's a red light. Normally they're there because they were in a queue of traffic when the lights changed, which is absolutely ok and allowed. Sometimes they didn't have their jedi foresight engaged when the light changed on them, which is human. So lock up 99% of drivers and throw away the key, or get a grip and realise it's just a helpful guidance line and no harm has been done.

On most occassions no harm will be done, on a few occassions a cyclist will be killed or injured in an accident that could have been avoided had the rules been followed, and a driver might find himself in court on a charge with serious consequences.
Martin W on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:

> The fine's only if you willingly go over it when there's a red light. Normally they're there because they were in a queue of traffic when the lights changed, which is absolutely ok and allowed.

Highway Code Rule 178:

Motorists, including motorcyclists, MUST stop at the first white line reached if the lights are amber or red and should avoid blocking the way or encroaching on the marked area at other times, e.g. if the junction ahead is blocked.

So it's not OK to go over the line if the light is amber, and it's not "absolutely ok and allowed" to encroach on the marked area if the junction ahead is blocked. You're wrong on both counts. Fail.
Bimbler - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Martin W:

>
> Highway Code Rule 178:
>
> Motorists, including motorcyclists, MUST stop at the first white line reached if the lights are amber or red and should avoid blocking the way or encroaching on the marked area at other times, e.g. if the junction ahead is blocked....

The rest of rule 178...

If your vehicle has proceeded over the first white line at the time that the signal goes red, you MUST stop at the second white line, even if your vehicle is in the marked area. Allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows.
Laws RTA 1988 sect 36 & TSRGD regs 10, 36(1) & 43(2)



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Bob_the_Builder - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bimbler:

In what world is it reasonable to stop protecting citizens just because there are others who break laws? That argument is patently ridiculous.
Bob_the_Builder - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to trouserburp:

I do generally ride around in front of them anyway, but it is technically illegal because I am running the red light and I don't like to do that. Crossing the line when the junction is blocked should also be discouraged in my opinion.

While you're locking up your 99% of drivers, I am simply suggesting that a fine should be enforced. It is not a helpful guidance line, it is a legal road marking that should be obeyed.
Bimbler - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:
> (In reply to Bimbler)
>
> That argument is patently ridiculous.

Err, I'm not arguing! I simply put the rest of the 'rule' which you had conveniently left out when arguing with someone else.

Feel free to carry on.

Bob_the_Builder - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bimbler:
> Enforcing ASL is great IF the majority of (commuting type) cyclists behaved in a predictable and safe manner. Unfortunately most don't so until this issue is solved I don't see what real purpose this serves.

This is the argument that is ridiculous. One definition of an argument is a statement trying to persuade people to agree with your point of view. For the sake of simplicity I will rephase my response.

Your statement is patently ridiculous.
Bimbler - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:
Yes, expecting cyclists to behave in a responsible and predictable manner in conjested urban environments is clearly a ridiculous statement, a bit like quoting highway code rules that have been copied and pasted to suit your arguments.
Bob_the_Builder - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Bimble:

There is no reason for police to ignore a law designed to protect me because there are other cyclists who break the law. To ignore the law in such a situation would be a punitive response to the entire cycling population. Also I don't know where you get your "unfortunately most don't" from, but most of the cyclists I know do what they need to stay safe, breaking as few laws as possible.

I did not post the highway code myself, but there is still the fact that many (notice I said "many" implying a significant number, rather that a distinct majority that is implied by "most") drivers ignore the advanced stop line AFTER the light has been red for a significant period. In addition, many drivers ignore the part of the code saying "Allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows." Which is probably the most important part.

I am sorry if you feel insulted by my accusation, but surely any instance when you oppose enforcement of existing laws is illogical? If you oppose the advanced stop line itself then that would be a more sensible thing to say, surely? I'm not trying to attack anyone, just back up my position.
Martin W on 04 Jan 2013
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:

> I did not post the highway code myself

I posted the bit of Rule 178 which Bimbler chose to jump on. I omitted the rest of the rule because it was entirely not relevant to my point, which was that Rule 178 makes it quite clear that it is not OK for a motor vehicle to go over the first stop line if the light is amber, as trouserburp claimed, nor is it "absolutely ok and allowed" to encroach on the marked area if the junction ahead is blocked.

Nothing in the section Bimbler quoted legitimates either of the actions which trouserburp claimed, erroneously, to be OK.
Ramblin dave - on 04 Jan 2013
In reply to Bob_the_Builder:
> (In reply to Bimble)
>
> There is no reason for police to ignore a law designed to protect me because there are other cyclists who break the law. To ignore the law in such a situation would be a punitive response to the entire cycling population.

Agreed. Imagine a comparable situation: what would you think if lorries kept pulling out of sideroads when they didn't have right of way and forcing other people to avoid them or get squished, and when other motorists complained the truckers said that "if car drivers want people to show them respect then maybe they shouldn't drive at 80mph on motorways"?

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