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Alan de Enfield

Maybe Cyclists Should Have Compulsory Insurance

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3 hours ago, Alan de Enfield said:

I disagree.

I have a fair bit of knowledge of towing (including a 30 foot Glider trailer) all over Europe.

The accident was not 100% predictable - I have overtaken many trucks and have never had that happen to me, you can feel a 'snake' starting and take action to prevent it developing further.

 

Edit to add :

I agree it could easily happen to an inexperienced (towing) driver who didn't have the correct towing equipment.

 

Edit to correct spooings erurs

Knowing that section of road, we will have to differ on just how predictable the outcome was. It is known as Ideford Dip which is a long downhill section (presumably where the caravan picked up the speed it did) and from where the road goes off to the left the uphill section starts. If a 'snake' begins one possible option is to try to accelerate out of it (often works, sometimes doesn't) but since the caravan was by the time of the accident going uphill, increasing its speed was always going to be a big ask. Braking obviously is completely out of the question so without the road space (like another outside lane) to try to take the 'sting' out of the snaking, the crash was inevitable. Had he passed the lorry at a slower speed he may have been able to cope with the effect of the 'bow wave' but the speed he passed at, it was always going to happen.

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13 hours ago, Murflynn said:

we have one of those in Bristol where a cycle path crosses the entrance into a heavily used petrol station.  There is no advance warning apart from a small road sign actually at the point where the path crosses the entry road.  The entry is well angled, like a motorway slip road.  IMHO it is a recipe for disaster because drivers are concentrating on looking to see which pump is vacant. 

That is more of a reflection of a poorly designed cycle path (there are many of those) it would clearly be better if the cyclist was on the road approaching the petrol station rather than out of the mind of any motorists by being on the footpath/cycle path.

 

Here is another one of pure genius

image.png.7d77a01a1df819c156ae3dea9588cccc.png

The cycle path is on the footpath leading up to the junction(at the top of the picture) at which point it is then dumped back onto the roadway at the traffic lights. Anyone following the cycle path onto the roadway is therefore likely to be wiped out by any drivers turning left at the junction who probably don't expect cyclists to suddenly appear on their nearside when, up to that point they've been on the footway. My own take on this junction is that I join the roadway a long way back from the junction so that drivers are already aware of my presence on the roadway. Of course a motorist may well be thinking 'why is he on the road when there is a perfectly adequate cycle path?' it is because the design of the cycle path is crap.

 

ETA the blue cycle path at the bottom of the picture is a whole different issue.

Edited by Wanderer Vagabond

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22 minutes ago, Wanderer Vagabond said:

It's nice that you are so concerned for cyclists safety, however after 50 years of cycling I am probably aware of what is safe and what isn't.

Well in another 12 years you will have been cycling as long as I have.

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8 minutes ago, Jerra said:

Well in another 12 years you will have been cycling as long as I have.

...and at a conservative estimate I'd say I've cycled about 140,000 miles (18 miles per day, 5 days a week for 30 years travelling to and from work, plus of course leisure cycling). I have a vague idea what is safe and what isn't.

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2 minutes ago, Wanderer Vagabond said:

...and at a conservative estimate I'd say I've cycled about 140,000 miles (18 miles per day, 5 days a week for 30 years travelling to and from work, plus of course leisure cycling). I have a vague idea what is safe and what isn't.

No idea how far I have cycled and I have no intention of getting into a competition but I equally think I have a good idea of what is safe and what isn't.

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10 hours ago, Jerra said:

No idea how far I have cycled and I have no intention of getting into a competition but I equally think I have a good idea of what is safe and what isn't.

so ........................   what is your good idea in those respects?

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21 minutes ago, Murflynn said:

so ........................   what is your good idea in those respects?

If you read back up the thread basically the opposite to WV cycle tracks for cycles and roads for big metal machines and if they won't do it voluntarily a requirement to use cycle tracks.

 

I accept out in the country this would be impossible but where you have a high number of both separation is clearly IMO sensible.

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Interesting that there is a document giving the minimum recommended widths and separation for walkers / cyclists using the same path.

 

http://www.standardsforhighways.co.uk/ha/standards/dmrb/vol6/section3/ta9005.pdf

 

The minimum required width for a shared cycle/pedestrian path is 3 metres. However if flows are high (so that cyclists travelling in opposite directions frequently have to pass each other) then the minimum width should be 5 metres.

In addition there should be at least 0.5 metres 'verge' between the edge of the path and the fence. The guideline also says 'Where a path is adjacent to hazards such as a ditch (or other water feature) a greater separation should be considered to minimise the risks'.  So there should be a greater space between the path and the edge of the canal.

 

I would doubt that many of the towpaths can comply.

 

1/2 metre (or greater) from edge of canal + 3 metres (or 5 metres) for the cycleway + 1/2 metre minimum separation + 2 metre pedestrian way + 0.5 metre to edge of hedge etc.

 

Total (minimum) = 6.5 metres.

 

7.17 The potential for conflict between users increases
where flows of more than one group are high. In this
case it is normally necessary to have some form of
segregation along the route. Route segregation should
also be considered if disabled people, people with
pushchairs or other vulnerable users are likely to make
frequent use of the facility. When determining the
method of segregation, consideration should be given to
the issues above and site-specific factors. For more
detailed information refer to draft LTN 2/04.


7.18 The preferred separation between different types
of NMU is 1.0m, with an acceptable separation of 0.5m.
Greater verge widths facilitate maintenance. Verges
adjacent to field boundaries and existing hedgerows

should be a minimum of 0.5m wide to allow hedges to
overhang the route without interfering with its use.


7.19 If the separation described above cannot be
provided, segregation may be achieved by use of a post
and single rail fence, railings, kerbs or delineator strips.
Guardrails should only be used in short lengths,
because over any appreciable distance the risk of cycle
handlebars and pedals colliding with them is increased.
Fences and guardrails can also trap users on the ‘wrong’
side. The principles are set out in more detail in draft
LTN 2/04 and ‘Inclusive Mobility’ (DfT, 2002).

Edited by Alan de Enfield

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6 hours ago, Alan de Enfield said:

Interesting that there is a document giving the minimum recommended widths and separation for walkers / cyclists using the same path.

 

http://www.standardsforhighways.co.uk/ha/standards/dmrb/vol6/section3/ta9005.pdf

 

The minimum required width for a shared cycle/pedestrian path is 3 metres. However if flows are high (so that cyclists travelling in opposite directions frequently have to pass each other) then the minimum width should be 5 metres.

In addition there should be at least 0.5 metres 'verge' between the edge of the path and the fence. The guideline also says 'Where a path is adjacent to hazards such as a ditch (or other water feature) a greater separation should be considered to minimise the risks'.  So there should be a greater space between the path and the edge of the canal.

 

I would doubt that many of the towpaths can comply.

 

1/2 metre (or greater) from edge of canal + 3 metres (or 5 metres) for the cycleway + 1/2 metre minimum separation + 2 metre pedestrian way + 0.5 metre to edge of hedge etc.

 

Total (minimum) = 6.5 metres.

 

7.17 The potential for conflict between users increases
where flows of more than one group are high. In this
case it is normally necessary to have some form of
segregation along the route. Route segregation should
also be considered if disabled people, people with
pushchairs or other vulnerable users are likely to make
frequent use of the facility. When determining the
method of segregation, consideration should be given to
the issues above and site-specific factors. For more
detailed information refer to draft LTN 2/04.


7.18 The preferred separation between different types
of NMU is 1.0m, with an acceptable separation of 0.5m.
Greater verge widths facilitate maintenance. Verges
adjacent to field boundaries and existing hedgerows

should be a minimum of 0.5m wide to allow hedges to
overhang the route without interfering with its use.


7.19 If the separation described above cannot be
provided, segregation may be achieved by use of a post
and single rail fence, railings, kerbs or delineator strips.
Guardrails should only be used in short lengths,
because over any appreciable distance the risk of cycle
handlebars and pedals colliding with them is increased.
Fences and guardrails can also trap users on the ‘wrong’
side. The principles are set out in more detail in draft
LTN 2/04 and ‘Inclusive Mobility’ (DfT, 2002).

I think the relevant part of the link is the title," Standards for Highways", towpaths are not highways so whilst of interest, the observations are not necessarily relevant. I have walked along many bridleways where the width also doesn't match the requirements of the Standards for Highways. Where they talk of off-carriageway paths, I believe it is intended to be the opposite of on-carriageway paths rather than completely off-road (a roadside footpath as opposed to a public footpath across arable land).

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On 24/08/2019 at 21:58, Jerra said:

No idea how far I have cycled and I have no intention of getting into a competition

Ah, so given all your other comments referring to cyclists in the third person and recommending things which would actually be bad for cyclists it seems reasonable to assume that like most drivers claiming "I'm a cyclist" you actually ride your bike about once a year for about a mile. Feel free to answer the question you were asked rather than avoid it if I'm wrong, but TBH it's quite clear from your comments that you have very little experience of cycling absolutely no idea what would be useful for them and that you're mostly bothered about them getting in your way.

 

On 25/08/2019 at 08:26, Jerra said:

If you read back up the thread basically the opposite to WV cycle tracks for cycles and roads for big metal machines and if they won't do it voluntarily a requirement to use cycle tracks.

Yeah, I read back and you wrote: "With regard to paragraph one unless we adopted the Dutch system which I can't see happening:

 

 firstly because I doubt the majority of drivers who aren't cyclists would accept such a change,

secondly why should the majority have the rules of the road changed so drastically for the minority."

 

so you're basically saying that we should have lots of cycle paths which are much slower for cyclists to use than roads because they have to keep stopping at every side turning? Honestly you don't have the slightest clue how bad such paths are - I'm not going to analyse all your points but several of your comments make it very clear you've never tried to use such a path for getting somewhere efficiently on a bike.

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It would appear that money spent on these cycle paths is wasted. Does it not occur to anyone to check with the cyclists before spending public money?

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17 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

It would appear that money spent on these cycle paths is wasted. Does it not occur to anyone to check with the cyclists before spending public money?

what - a bit like the BBC TV interviewer asking a random motorist stuck in a traffic jam what should be done to improve the roads?

 

....................  or p'raps a referendum ....................   :rolleyes:

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2 hours ago, Murflynn said:

what - a bit like the BBC TV interviewer asking a random motorist stuck in a traffic jam what should be done to improve the roads?

 

....................  or p'raps a referendum ....................   :rolleyes:

Well if cyclists decline to use cycle paths then clearly that shows a lack of proper public consultation. That's public money being thrown away for no apparent reason.

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21 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

Well if cyclists decline to use cycle paths then clearly that shows a lack of proper public consultation. That's public money being thrown away for no apparent reason.

simples - where a cycle path exists, make it an offence to drive on the highway.  no 'consultation' needed.   

 

consultation = procrastination

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2 hours ago, Murflynn said:

what - a bit like the BBC TV interviewer asking a random motorist stuck in a traffic jam what should be done to improve the roads?

 

....................  or p'raps a referendum ....................   :rolleyes:

`Not at all like that, but then you're clearly just being deliberately stupid. Plenty of cycling groups which could be consulted.

 

29 minutes ago, Murflynn said:

simples - where a cycle path exists, make it an offence to drive on the highway.  no 'consultation' needed.   

 

consultation = procrastination

Ah, so you're actually in favour of forcing people to do things which make life worse for them?

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37 minutes ago, aracer said:

 

 

Ah, so you're actually in favour of forcing people to do things which make life worse for them?

Is that the same as prohibiting people from doing things that make life worse for others?

I would like to see a definitive set of priorities for the road cyclist. It does appear that according to many the risk of riding on the road are sufficiently small to make it unworthwhile avoiding it at the cost of a few seconds delay.

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1 hour ago, aracer said:

 

 

Ah, so you're actually in favour of forcing people to do things which make life worse for them?

cars are banned from driving on the cycle path or the bus lane even though that may be the best route to avoid congestion.    am I in favour of that?   not really, but as a motorist I accept the disciplines that have to apply if we are all going to get on with life in a safe and co-operative manner.  it's pretty clear that a significant proportion of cyclists do not accept those principles.   

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3 hours ago, Sir Nibble said:

It would appear that money spent on these cycle paths is wasted. Does it not occur to anyone to check with the cyclists before spending public money?

It's complicated. For a start there are lots of different cyclists (despite the tendency of many on here to group them all together) - for some leisure cyclists who are too nervous to use the roads (for which I can't really blame them) such paths do provide a benefit. But this arose from a query as to why cyclists didn't use such a path - for many routes with such paths, most cyclists are trying to get somewhere so the path isn't the best option. There would be uproar if we adopted another idea from the Netherlands and made it more inconvenient for people to travel into and through towns in cars (despite the proven benefits) but apparently such inconvenience is fine for cyclists. But then I presume many commenting here think it would be a good thing if there were less cyclists (despite the problems of pollution, climate change, congestion etc.) - because they seem to be very happy to discourage cycling.

 

Though to come back to your question - believe it or not there are national guidelines on cycle paths which are actually fairly reasonable (I think cycling groups were consulted), but they are not mandatory and routinely ignored. What seems to happen is that councils have money to spend on cycling facilities and they just hand the job to their normal highways engineers who have no idea about cycling and just build anything they think might be useful with no consultation at all.

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51 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

Is that the same as prohibiting people from doing things that make life worse for others?

Like driving a car rather than cycling?

51 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

I would like to see a definitive set of priorities for the road cyclist. It does appear that according to many the risk of riding on the road are sufficiently small to make it unworthwhile avoiding it at the cost of a few seconds delay.

A few seconds? 🙄🤣 Those cycle paths cause far more delay than that at each junction, along with lots of extra energy expenditure getting back up to speed. Bike paths should be built to make things easier for cyclists, not harder, there is absolutely no debate to be had about that. Or do you think we should be discouraging cycling?

 

Your assumption that they're safer is flawed given that accidents mostly happen at junctions. Meanwhile it seems there is objection to prioritising the bike path because it would cause a few seconds delay to drivers (really a few seconds in this case) and all the time I see drivers doing unsafe things to at best save a few seconds.

37 minutes ago, Murflynn said:

cars are banned from driving on the cycle path or the bus lane even though that may be the best route to avoid congestion.    am I in favour of that?   not really, but as a motorist I accept the disciplines that have to apply if we are all going to get on with life in a safe and co-operative manner.

Strawman.

37 minutes ago, Murflynn said:

 

  it's pretty clear that a significant proportion of cyclists do not accept those principles.   

It's pretty clear that a significant proportion of drivers don't accept those principles. 1700 deaths a year - it's not the cyclists doing that.

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It's clear that we need a national cycling strategy. To do that we need agreed priorities. Unfortunately I think there would be resistance from both motorists and cyclists to anything that doesn't serve their own selfish convenience.

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16 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

It's clear that we need a national cycling strategy. To do that we need agreed priorities. Unfortunately I think there would be resistance from both motorists and cyclists to anything that doesn't serve their own selfish convenience.

I agree with that premise (though I think there probably is one, it's just ineffective). I'm curious what you think the selfish objections from cyclists would be though - objections to cycle paths such as those discussed? On the contrary it's clear that the current situation is extremely unbalanced in favour of motorists - if you want to see somebody selfish on the road I suggest you'll have better luck looking inside a metal box than for somebody in lycra (it's just that such behaviour from motorists is so normalised nobody notices).

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9 minutes ago, aracer said:

I agree with that premise (though I think there probably is one, it's just ineffective). I'm curious what you think the selfish objections from cyclists would be though - objections to cycle paths such as those discussed? On the contrary it's clear that the current situation is extremely unbalanced in favour of motorists - if you want to see somebody selfish on the road I suggest you'll have better luck looking inside a metal box than for somebody in lycra (it's just that such behaviour from motorists is so normalised nobody notices).

Not selfish behaviour, but behaviour based on selfish convenience. Example. I'm behind a cycle. When space allows I overtake allowing the requested 1.5M clearance. A little further I encounter a queue for a roundabout and stop. There is about a metre of clearance between me and oncoming traffic doing 30mph. This is not vaguely close to safe overtaking clearance but the cyclist takes it anyway in reckless disregard for his own life.

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28 minutes ago, Sir Nibble said:

Not selfish behaviour, but behaviour based on selfish convenience. Example. I'm behind a cycle. When space allows I overtake allowing the requested 1.5M clearance. A little further I encounter a queue for a roundabout and stop. There is about a metre of clearance between me and oncoming traffic doing 30mph. This is not vaguely close to safe overtaking clearance but the cyclist takes it anyway in reckless disregard for his own life.

QED 😂 - clearly in that case the best outcome is obtained if you wait behind the cyclist until encountering the queue of stationary traffic, in which case nobody has to take the risk of overtaking. But the need to overtake cyclists is so normalised and ingrained that I'm guessing that didn't even occur to you when writing that post. It's such a normal thing as a cyclist to be overtaken by a car (sometimes dangerously) and then catch the car up again when they get to the back of a queue, but you'll still get the drivers complaining about cyclists holding them up.

 

Presumably you think the cyclist should wait behind you once you've overtaken him/her?

 

Though I note that you also clearly don't understand the difference between a car overtaking a cyclist and a cyclist overtaking a car (and why the required clearance is different) and that the situation almost certainly wasn't as you saw it - for a start I very much doubt there was only 1m between you and oncoming traffic, that would be very abnormal on a road on an approach to a roundabout (standard highway width 7.3m - though I'd expect more on a roundabout approach - standard car width ~1.8m, you do the math)

Edited by aracer

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4 hours ago, Sir Nibble said:

Well if cyclists decline to use cycle paths then clearly that shows a lack of proper public consultation. That's public money being thrown away for no apparent reason.

I use cycle paths all the time, when I can. There are certain instances when I wouldn't use a cycle path and will use the road instead and those are mainly the cycle paths which have just had a wide pedestrian path painted with a line down the middle. I don't think those are especially safe for cyclist or pedestrian, unless you're cycling at pedestrian pace, in which case I'll use the road.

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3 minutes ago, NB Caelmiri said:

I use cycle paths all the time, when I can. There are certain instances when I wouldn't use a cycle path and will use the road instead and those are mainly the cycle paths which have just had a wide pedestrian path painted with a line down the middle. I don't think those are especially safe for cyclist or pedestrian, unless you're cycling at pedestrian pace, in which case I'll use the road.

You're possibly lucky to have good paths. They do exist. However shared use paths is another good example of why forcing cyclists to use paths would be a really bad thing (and cyclists objecting to using those isn't at all "behaviour based on selfish convenience"

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