Changes to the Highway Code, Affecting our right to cycle on road.

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Future-pro, Feb 17, 2006.

  1. Future-pro

    Future-pro New Member

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    I am sending you this as the consultation process for amendments to the Highway Code. Included are proposed amendments to the rules covering cycling. Closing date for comments is May 1, I think.

    Rule 58 is expanded to 'use cycle facilities ... where these are provided' (instead of 'where practicable').

    If that gets through, we have effectively lost our right to use the road anywhere the man from the council has been out with his paint pot, regardless of utility, condition or quality of the "facility". The consultation is being run by the Driving Standards Agency. I may be an old cynic, but to me that speaks volumes about how the needs and safety of cyclists will actually be prioritised.

    The relevant website is

    http://www.dsa.gov.uk/Content.asp?id=SX7A58-A7827478

    and as far as I know you do have to register on the site, but it's a once only registration.

    Even if you don't have the time or inclination to make formal comment about the proposed changes to the Highway Code, it would be useful if you could pass this along to as many cyclists as possible. It's important that we are not effectively losing our basic right to cycle on the road by being forced to use sub-standard cycling facilities (or 'farcilities' as I tend to call them). Can you imagine our sporting cyclists having to train on cycle lanes painted on the road keeping them in the gutters? What would be the case if a time trial course has a cycle 'facility' on an adjacent footpath? Would we want to see the possible loss of such courses because a change to the Highway Code would mean that cyclists would be expected to get off the road and use the shared use footpath? There is a TT course outside Ely where there is a shared use footpath running alongside the road. Would the proposed changes to the Highway Code effectively mean this course becomes unusable?

    On suggestion I've seen from somone which could be of much value, is a a structural change to the Code. As it is, there are two classes of rule: law ("must") and rule ("should") - this puts wearing a fluorescent jacket on an equal footing with not overtaking on bends in terms of strength of recommendation. Instead, he suggests there should be three kinds of content: general guidance and advice (preferably written in prose rather than as numbered rules), safety-critical information, failure to follow which may be evidence of driving without due care or some other offence, and law.
    p.s. this has already been posted in the Bike Cafe area just posting it here so as many people as possible can see it
     
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