Cycling two abreast

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Neil Hardman, Jun 14, 2003.

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  1. Neil Hardman

    Neil Hardman Guest

    A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who (I
    assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this was is
    illegal / advisable ?

    Any thoughts appreciated.

    Neil
     
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  2. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Neil Hardman wrote:
    > A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who (I
    > assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this was
    > is illegal / advisable ?

    Highway Code rule 51: "You should ... not ride more than two abreast."

    There is a good argument for saying that cycling two abreast makes it easier for motorists to get
    past you, as if there is room to safely pull around a single cyclist then there is also room to
    safely pull around two cyclists riding abreast. Two cyclists abreast take up less length of road
    than two cyclists in single file, so the motorist doesn't have to spend as long on the wrong side of
    the road while overtaking.

    --
    Danny Colyer (remove safety to reply) ( http://www.juggler.net/danny ) Recumbent cycle page:
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/recumbents/ "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." -
    Thomas Paine
     
  3. Dave

    Dave Guest

    "Danny Colyer" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Neil Hardman wrote:
    > > A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who
    > > (I assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this
    > > was is illegal / advisable ?
    >
    > Highway Code rule 51: "You should ... not ride more than two abreast."
    >
    > There is a good argument for saying that cycling two abreast makes it easier for motorists to get
    > past you, as if there is room to safely pull around a single cyclist then there is also room to
    > safely pull around two cyclists riding abreast. Two cyclists abreast take up less length of road
    > than two cyclists in single file, so the motorist doesn't have to spend as long on the wrong side
    > of the road while overtaking.
    >
    > --
    > Danny Colyer (remove safety to reply) ( http://www.juggler.net/danny ) Recumbent cycle page:
    > http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/recumbents/ "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." -
    > Thomas Paine
    >
    ....and ofcourse, the day you start taking anything said by a taxi driver seriously....... ;-) Dave.
     
  4. In article <[email protected]>, "Danny Colyer" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >There is a good argument for saying that cycling two abreast makes it easier for motorists to get
    >past you, as if there is room to safely pull around a single cyclist then there is also room to
    >safely pull around two cyclists riding abreast.

    Bristol must be suffering from some mutant plague of drivers who leave gaps bigger than half a metre
    as they thunder past..... could you get them to interbreed with some of ours? :-/

    Richard

    --
    Richard Edgar Robinson College All Opinions My Own etc.
     
  5. In Ireland the code used to say..

    Cyclist should not cycle 2 abreast in built-up areas and should not cycle more than 2 abreast
    outside of those.

    It now says should not cycle 2 abreast in heavy traffic and so on.

    We get occasional ignorant drivers who stop and abuse us and misquote the ROR. I usually bet them
    their car vs. its value as to what it says. I've not been taken on yet. I acually carry a photocopy
    of the relevant page in one of my cycling bags!
     
  6. Garry Broad

    Garry Broad Guest

    On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 22:21:57 +0100, "Neil Hardman" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who (I
    >assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this was
    >is illegal / advisable ?
    >
    >Any thoughts appreciated.
    >

    Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.

    I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.

    Perfectly legal though.

    Garry
     
  7. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 22:21:57 +0100 someone who may be "Neil Hardman" <[email protected]>
    wrote this:-

    >A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who (I
    >assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this was
    >is illegal / advisable ?

    You have a legal right to proceed along the road. If someone wants to overtake then they are (in
    most circumstances) free to do so, provided that they can do so safely. The Highway Code is
    available on line for you to study, which is a reasonable guide to the law as well as a source of
    advice, most of which is useful.

    He was only picking on you because far too many taxi drivers are bad drivers who think that everyone
    else should be cleared out of their way. Were you driving or steering a traction engine he would
    probably not have had a go at you, because bullies only pick on those they think they can bully.

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  8. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 09:10:28 +0100 someone who may be Garry Broad <[email protected]>
    wrote this:-

    >>A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend
    >
    >Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.

    Why?

    >I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.

    Does cycling "hold up" other traffic more than cycling in single file?

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  9. Mike Gayler

    Mike Gayler Guest

    Garry Broad <[email protected]> writed in news:[email protected]:

    > On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 22:21:57 +0100, "Neil Hardman" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who (I
    >>assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this was
    >>is illegal / advisable ?
    >>
    >>Any thoughts appreciated.
    >>
    >
    > Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    >
    > I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.
    >
    > Perfectly legal though.
    >
    > Garry

    Cyclists are traffic!
     
  10. Mike Gayler wrote:
    > Garry Broad <[email protected]> writed in news:[email protected]:
    >>Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    >>
    >>I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.
    >>
    >>Perfectly legal though.

    Agreed on all counts.

    > Cyclists are traffic!

    That's nice to know. Are you trying to claim that cyclists two abreast never hold you up when you're
    cycling? Cos it sure as hell holds me up when I'm cycling up behind them.

    w
     
  11. Stephen \

    Stephen \ Guest

    "David Hansen" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 09:10:28 +0100 someone who may be Garry Broad <[email protected]>
    > wrote this:-
    >
    > >>A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend
    > >
    > >Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    >
    > Why?
    >
    > >I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.
    >
    > Does cycling "hold up" other traffic more than cycling in single file?
    >
    Or more than "other traffic"?
     
  12. Garry Broad

    Garry Broad Guest

    On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 13:00:52 +0100, David Hansen <[email protected]> wrote:

    >On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 09:10:28 +0100 someone who may be Garry Broad <[email protected]>
    >wrote this:-
    >
    >>>A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend
    >>
    >>Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    >
    >Why?

    Why?

    Well, (putting cager hat on) I guess, to begin with, it's an instictive reaction, "why are those two
    taking up half the road, when if they were in single file I could pass more easily. I'm now stuck
    behind these two at ***mph and I want to pass!". Hands up, this is it! Point is, in heavy traffic in
    the oppostite direction, it's virtually impossible to pass without creating a well dodgy situation,
    taking a real hazadous risk...but single file often presents no problem....except on the most narrow
    of roads. Ease up a bit, check your width, see what's ahead, overtake...no worries. Two a breast?
    For me, whole different ball game. So we share the road. I have this big nasty heap of metal that
    can do a ton, and 'they' have these bikes that go much slower. Pubs are for 'gossiping' anyway :)
    And if you want my real honest opinion, I think some people do it to 'p*** off motorists'.....but
    I'm not going there :)

    there....must be plenty here to come back at !

    garry

    >>I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.
    >
    >Does cycling "hold up" other traffic more than cycling in single file?
     
  13. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 21:20:59 +0100, Garry Broad <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Point is, in heavy traffic in the oppostite direction, it's virtually impossible to pass without
    >creating a well dodgy situation, taking a real hazadous risk...but single file often presents no
    >problem....except on the most narrow of roads.

    As long as your definition of "no problem" only includes no problem to you, of course. It is
    perfectly possibly to overtake a lone cyclist on a busy road with traffic coming the other way
    without endangering anybody's life but the cyclist's, and that's what most drivers choose to do, but
    in the main if it's not safe to overtake two bikes abreast it's not safe to overtake at all unless
    the road is unusually wide. And most riders don't ride two-abreast on wide urban roads.

    The alternative, waiting a moment, doesn't seem to be in the average cager's bag of tricks though.

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com Advance
    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
    between the engineer removing the BT service and the same engineer connecting the same equipment on
    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
  14. Neil Hardman

    Neil Hardman Guest

    I wasn't trying to piss anyone off.. It was a quiet evening ride with not much traffic about. I
    appreciate that it might piss people off but then again I think other road users should be a little
    more laid back about going fast everywhere. Slowing down might be good for them :)

    Neil

    "Garry Broad" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 13:00:52 +0100, David Hansen <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 09:10:28 +0100 someone who may be Garry Broad <[email protected]>
    > >wrote this:-
    > >
    > >>>A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend
    > >>
    > >>Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    > >
    > >Why?
    >
    > Why?
    >
    > Well, (putting cager hat on) I guess, to begin with, it's an instictive reaction, "why are those
    > two taking up half the road, when if they were in single file I could pass more easily. I'm now
    > stuck behind these two at ***mph and I want to pass!". Hands up, this is it! Point is, in heavy
    > traffic in the oppostite direction, it's virtually impossible to pass without creating a well
    > dodgy situation, taking a real hazadous risk...but single file often presents no problem....except
    > on the most narrow of roads. Ease up a bit, check your width, see what's ahead, overtake...no
    > worries. Two a breast? For me, whole different ball game. So we share the road. I have this big
    > nasty heap of metal that can do a ton, and 'they' have these bikes that go much slower. Pubs are
    > for 'gossiping' anyway :) And if you want my real honest opinion, I think some people do it to
    > 'p*** off motorists'.....but I'm not going there :)
    >
    > there....must be plenty here to come back at !
    >
    > garry
    >
    >
    > >>I can't see the logic of holding up traffic other than to inflame with more petrol.
    > >
    > >Does cycling "hold up" other traffic more than cycling in single file?
     
  15. Just zis Guy, you know? wrote:
    > On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 21:20:59 +0100, Garry Broad <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>Point is, in heavy traffic in the oppostite direction, it's virtually impossible to pass without
    >>creating a well dodgy situation, taking a real hazadous risk...but single file often presents no
    >>problem....except on the most narrow of roads.
    >
    > As long as your definition of "no problem" only includes no problem to you, of course. It is
    > perfectly possibly to overtake a lone cyclist on a busy road with traffic coming the other way
    > without endangering anybody's life but the cyclist's, and that's what most drivers choose

    _Most_ drivers choose to endanger the life of the cyclist? I know you're extremely anti-car, but
    that's stretching it a bit, even for you, Guy.

    > to do, but in the main if it's not safe to overtake two bikes abreast it's not safe to overtake at
    > all unless the road is unusually wide. And most riders don't ride two-abreast on wide urban roads.

    That's utter rubbish, unless you're saying that the overtaking vehicle (be it car or bike) should
    give less space than they would overtaking a single bike. 2X+Y is greater than X+Y (X is bike width,
    Y is overtaking space), unless the bike is of zero width, which is impossible.

    > The alternative, waiting a moment, doesn't seem to be in the average cager's bag of tricks though.

    The concept of courtesy to other road users sadly seems to be lacking from all classes of vehicle
    user, with a far too large percentage of each thinking that _they_ have the 'right' to the
    roadspace.

    w
     
  16. Tim Woodall

    Tim Woodall Guest

    On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 22:10:21 +0100, William Turner <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > That's utter rubbish, unless you're saying that the overtaking vehicle (be it car or bike) should
    > give less space than they would overtaking a single bike. 2X+Y is greater than X+Y (X is bike
    > width, Y is overtaking space), unless the bike is of zero width, which is impossible.
    >
    No, just that the motorist can give (1e-15)X+Y when overtaking one cyclist which means s/he doesn't
    have to pass any closer to the oncomming traffic than if there was no cyclist. As soon as they are
    two abreast the _minimum_ distance they can give is (1+1e-15)X+Y which means they have to wait for a
    suitable gap and so 2X+Y makes absolutely no difference.

    To a certain extent, when cycling alone you can make the X by not riding too close to the kerb but
    some drivers will _deliberately_ swerve in at you as they overtake because X+Y doesn't give them
    room with the oncomming traffic and they can't bear to wait. Far better to risk killing someone else
    so that they can get to the back of the queue ahead a fraction of a second later.

    Tim.

    --
    God said, "div D = rho, div B = 0, curl E = - @B/@t, curl H = J + @D/@t," and there was light.

    http://tjw.hn.org/ http://www.locofungus.btinternet.co.uk/
     
  17. Paul Kelly

    Paul Kelly Guest

    "William Turner" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Just zis Guy, you know? wrote:
    > > On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 21:20:59 +0100, Garry Broad <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > The concept of courtesy to other road users sadly seems to be lacking from all classes of vehicle
    > user, with a far too large percentage of each thinking that _they_ have the 'right' to the
    > roadspace.
    >
    > w

    As cyclist & pedestrian & parent of small children & driver, I do have to say that it is careless
    and lawbreaking cyclists who put me and mine at most risk most often.

    I and my children have been very close to being ridden into by cyclists blithely ignoring red
    traffic lights and even worse red lights at pelican crossings on more occasions than I care to
    mention. That is deliberate and conscious law breaking putting other road users at risk. Ditto
    cyclists travelling at speed (esp around corners) on the pavement.

    As cyclist it is the stupid or ignorant actions of motorists that give me problems not (generally)
    deliberate choice by them to break the law.

    Now I guess that most on here would not dream of behaving like the cyclists I describe but please
    let us not pretend that all cyclists are paragons of roadusing virtue.

    pk
     
  18. Ian Smith

    Ian Smith Guest

    On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 22:10:21 +0100, William Turner <[email protected]> wrote:
    > That's utter rubbish, unless you're saying that the overtaking vehicle (be it car or bike) should
    > give less space than they would overtaking a single bike. 2X+Y is greater than X+Y (X is bike
    > width, Y is overtaking space), unless the bike is of zero width, which is impossible.

    No, but done properly, Y is very much greater than X, so in almost all circumstances, 2X+Y is not
    significantly different to X+Y.

    regards, Ian SMith
    --
    |\ /| no .sig
    |o o|
    |/ \|
     
  19. John B

    John B Guest

    Garry Broad wrote:

    > On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 22:21:57 +0100, "Neil Hardman" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >A few weeks ago I was cycling two abreast with a friend and was shouted at by a taxi driver who
    > >(I assume) felt we were impeding his progress along the road. I was wondering if cycling in this
    > >was is illegal / advisable ?
    > >
    > >Any thoughts appreciated.
    > >
    >
    > Well, as a cyclist I never do it, and as a car driver it really pisses me off.
    >
    > I can't see the logic of holding up traffic....

    As as part of "traffic" I could get pretty annoyed most days when I get held up sole-occupancy car
    drivers - usually often blocking the road at lights, junctions, roundabouts etc.

    Why should they be allowed to transport around a vehicle at least twice as wide as they require and
    thus causing delays to other road users?

    John B
     
  20. John B

    John B Guest

    Paul Kelly wrote:

    > "William Turner" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > Just zis Guy, you know? wrote:
    > > > On Sun, 15 Jun 2003 21:20:59 +0100, Garry Broad <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > > The concept of courtesy to other road users sadly seems to be lacking from all classes of
    > > vehicle user, with a far too large percentage of each thinking that _they_ have the 'right' to
    > > the roadspace.
    > >
    > > w
    >
    > As cyclist & pedestrian & parent of small children & driver, I do have to say that it is careless
    > and lawbreaking cyclists who put me and mine at most risk most often.

    As a cyclist, pedestrian and parent the biggest threat to my children's safety is from the careless
    inconsiderate selfish car driver - and often they are not even breaking the law - which says
    something for the priorities given towards safety.

    John B
     
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