Putting cyclists at risk

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Wallace Shackle, Mar 16, 2004.

  1. From the pages of the Scotsman

    http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=304402004

    ==============

    Cyclists put at risk from road safety schemes, claims group

    ALASTAIR DALTON TRANSPORT CORRESPONDENT

    ROAD-SAFETY measures designed to protect cyclists are
    putting them at greater risk from other traffic, according
    to a new Scotland-wide body.

    Cycling Scotland said the shortcomings of some traffic-
    calming and road "improvements" had increased the danger of
    cyclists being hit by vehicles or colliding with
    pedestrians.

    The group said, despite such schemes being funded by
    Scottish Executive grants to make streets safer for cyclists
    and pedestrians, local-authority officials had failed to
    follow design guidelines.

    Cycling Scotland said they include slippery rubber "speed
    cushions" in Ayrshire, cycle lanes being introduced against
    the flow of traffic in Glasgow city centre, and awkwardly
    positioned cycle lanes near roundabouts elsewhere. "Pinch
    points" that narrow crossings for pedestrians also funnelled
    cyclists into traffic, it said.

    Michael Addiscott, a spokesman for the group, said: "There
    are many places where cyclists get squeezed into the traffic
    flow, are directed into pedestrian crossings or are faced
    with pedestrians walking off pavements on to contraflow
    cycle lanes. Unfortunately, the engineers who are
    responsible for installing these treatments do not often
    understand the needs of the intended user. They are
    discouraging those they are meant to be helping, and in many
    instances putting them at real risk."

    For example, Mr Addiscott said cycle lanes on the left
    side of roads approaching roundabouts forced cyclists
    turning right or going straight ahead to cut across
    traffic turning left.

    He claimed the problem lay with local-authority roads
    officials failing to consult relevant design manuals when
    constructing such schemes.

    However, he said he hoped the official launch of Cycling
    Scotland as the country’s first national umbrella body would
    improve the co-ordination and planning of future projects.

    The organisation, which is funded by the Executive, aims to
    help ministers meet their target of quadrupling cycling
    between 1996 and 2012.

    Mr Addiscott said cycling could help tackle child
    obesity, with the pursuit more popular among youngsters
    than football. However, while surveys have shown 46 per
    cent of children would like to cycle to school, just 2
    per cent do so.

    Cycling Scotland said 80 per cent of households had access
    to a bike, and twice as many bikes as cars were sold in
    Scotland every year.

    --
    Wallace Shackleton,

    Kinross, Scotland.

    Cycling in Kinross-shire www.cyclekinross.org.uk

    Perth & Kinross Cycle Campaign www.bycycle.org.uk
     
    Tags:


  2. Burt

    Burt Guest

    "Wallace Shackleton" <wwsha[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > From the pages of the Scotsman
    >
    > http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=304402004
    >
    > ==============
    >
    > Cyclists put at risk from road safety schemes,
    > claims group
    >
    > ALASTAIR DALTON TRANSPORT CORRESPONDENT
    >
    > ROAD-SAFETY measures designed to protect cyclists are
    > putting them at greater risk from other traffic, according
    > to a new Scotland-wide body.
    >
    > Cycling Scotland said the shortcomings of some traffic-
    > calming and road "improvements" had increased the danger
    > of cyclists being hit by vehicles or colliding with
    > pedestrians.
    >
    > The group said, despite such schemes being funded by
    > Scottish Executive grants to make streets safer for
    > cyclists and pedestrians, local-authority officials had
    > failed to follow design guidelines.
    >
    Big snip

    Could apply to almost all local authorities in England as
    well, so this is a UK-wide problem, and has been for years.
    LA has funds to "do something for cyclists" and the usual
    response is to do something which looks good, but is highly
    impractical, and can be dangerous.

    In England, the ERCDT (English Regions Cycling Development
    Team) was supposed to be sorting this out, but in the SW
    at least, they didn't actually talk to anyone except the
    LAs themselves, and certainly not cyclists, which has
    resulted in their reports being highly biased, and of
    questionable use.
     
  3. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 07:11:17 +0000 someone who may be Wallace
    Shackleton <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=304402004
    >
    >ALASTAIR DALTON TRANSPORT CORRESPONDENT

    >"Pinch points" that narrow crossings for pedestrians also
    >funnelled cyclists into traffic, it said.

    I do hope it didn't say that and The Scotsman has got it
    wrong.

    --
    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.
     
  4. McBain_v1

    McBain_v1 New Member

    Joined:
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    I worked as a Town Planner for 5 years and if there is one thing that was made abundantly clear during that time it is that Local Authority Highway Engineers know sweet fanny adams about designing for cyclists.

    The vast majority of highway engineers always believe in the primacy of the motor car above all other considerations, and go into collective fits of apoplexy if you dare to suggest that perhaps the car should take second stage to other concerns.

    Until you can edify the engineers, you are going to continue to get absolutely crap "traffic calming" that introduces greater potential for accidents, more marginalisation of cyclists, and god-awful residential layouts.

    It isn't just Scotland that is suffering, it's the whole of Britain :(
     
  5. Gawnsoft

    Gawnsoft Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 08:13:30 +0000, David Hansen
    <[email protected]> wrote (more or less):

    >On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 07:11:17 +0000 someone who may be
    >Wallace Shackleton <[email protected]> wrote this:-
    >
    >>http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=304402004
    >>
    >>ALASTAIR DALTON TRANSPORT CORRESPONDENT
    >
    >>"Pinch points" that narrow crossings for pedestrians also
    >>funnelled cyclists into traffic, it said.
    >
    >I do hope it didn't say that and The Scotsman has got
    >it wrong.

    IMO any pinch point that pinches from the pavement to the
    centre does funnel cyclists into the vehicular traffic.

    Especially if there is a cycle lane preceding the pinch
    point, and following the pinch point, which the pinch point
    is effectively built over.

    And, again IMO, pinch points created by using traffic
    islands are a different matter.

    Cheers, Euan Gawnsoft: http://www.gawnsoft.co.sr
    Symbian/Epoc wiki: http://html.dnsalias.net:1122 Smalltalk
    links (harvested from comp.lang.smalltalk)
    http://html.dnsalias.net/gawnsoft/smalltalk
     
  6. Graeme

    Graeme Guest

    Gawnsoft <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > IMO any pinch point that pinches from the pavement to the
    > centre does funnel cyclists into the vehicular traffic.
    >

    I think that's what David was commenting about. Cyclists
    can't be funnelled into traffic as they *are* traffic.
    Funnelled into *other* traffic or cars maybe, but we are
    valid vehicular traffic. Talking about cyclists as if they
    were some sort of separate entity helps reinforce opinions
    along the lines of "It's our road, we paid road tax for
    it[1], get on the cycle path!" type nonsense.

    Graeme

    [1] A statement which is itself complete rubbish.
     
  7. Nick Kew

    Nick Kew Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    Gawnsoft <[email protected]> writes:
    >>I do hope it didn't say that and The Scotsman has got
    >>it wrong.
    >
    > IMO any pinch point that pinches from the pavement to the
    > centre does funnel cyclists into the vehicular traffic.

    I rather suspect David was being pedantic about the
    definition of traffic. Correct, but probably not helpful.

    --
    Nick Kew
     
  8. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

  9. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 10:11:06 +0000 someone who may be
    [email protected] (Nick Kew) wrote this:-

    >I rather suspect David was being pedantic about the
    >definition of traffic.

    I was being accurate.

    >Correct, but probably not helpful.

    The idea that cycles are not part of the traffic is one of
    the most dangerous ideas that road builders have. It
    encourages the "let's get these dammed cyclists out of the
    way" approach that has led to apartheid "facilities".

    --
    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.
     
  10. Doki

    Doki Guest

    Graeme wrote:
    > Gawnsoft
    > <[email protected]> wrote
    > in news:[email protected]:
    >
    >> IMO any pinch point that pinches from the pavement to the
    >> centre does funnel cyclists into the vehicular traffic.
    >>
    >
    > I think that's what David was commenting about. Cyclists
    > can't be funnelled into traffic as they *are* traffic.
    > Funnelled into *other* traffic or cars maybe, but we are
    > valid vehicular traffic. Talking about cyclists as if they
    > were some sort of separate entity helps reinforce opinions
    > along the lines of "It's our road, we paid road tax for
    > it[1], get on the cycle path!" type nonsense.
    >
    >
    > Graeme
    >
    > [1] A statement which is itself complete rubbish.

    Obviously if it's been paid for by tax, it's public / govt
    property, but the majority of motor tax isn't spent on
    road building.
     
  11. James Hodson

    James Hodson Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 07:11:17 +0000, Wallace Shackleton
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    [HUGE SNIP]

    I wonder exactly what is meant by this:

    >Cycling Scotland said 80 per cent of households had access
    >to a bike...

    I've had access to a bike for most of my life but have
    ridden cycles only as a child and more recently for the last
    ten or so years.

    James
     
  12. Jay Dear

    Jay Dear Guest

    So, given that local authorities have budgets to spend on
    promoting cycling through road 'improvements', what
    should they do?

    Where are some good examples of cycle facilities being
    implemented?

    Jay

    Dave Kahn wrote:

    >
    > This is news? Almost all of the cycle "facilities" I know
    > make cycling slower, more difficult, more inconvenient and
    > more dangerous.
     
  13. Fredster

    Fredster Guest

    "Jay Dear" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > So, given that local authorities have budgets to spend on
    > promoting cycling through road 'improvements', what should
    > they do?
    >
    > Where are some good examples of cycle facilities being
    > implemented?
    >

    Actually, you have me a bit stumped there. The closest I
    can come up with are the advisory cycle lanes in the 40mph
    sections of my journey home. Drivers normally stay out of
    them as a matter of course, meaning you have a lot more
    room than you would otherwise. If I had the power to
    change cycling facilities, these are the only ones I
    wouldn't rip out.

    Additions I would like to see would include more well-
    signposted 'quiet' cycle routes and more short-cut routes to
    offer an obvious benefit for cyclists.
     
  14. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Jay Dear wrote:
    > So, given that local authorities have budgets to spend on
    > promoting cycling through road 'improvements', what should
    > they do?

    They should consult cyclists (the CTC are an obvious point
    of contact with their benchmarking scheme) rather than
    assume that painting lines along the roads and/or pavement
    will necessarily make cyclists' lives better. Most cycle
    facilities seem to be planned by well meaning folk relying
    on "common sense" rather than cycling experience and the
    results are very hit and miss.

    > Where are some good examples of cycle facilities being
    > implemented?

    Fife have some okay ones and their cycle development folk
    seem to have Clues so they understand the issues with poorer
    stuff. So there are places in St. A's where you can get
    places quicker by using a bike facility than if you don't,
    and the main road into St. A's has a good roadside path
    without right of way loss or extra junctions that keeps you
    off a busy single carriageway A road with lots of bends
    which nobody liked cycling on much. But they have some
    clunkers too: before you get to the above path coming
    through Guardbridge you're taken from the main road, forced
    to cross it and then led twice the necessary distance
    through a wee housing scheme, over minor roads and up and
    down alleys and then back over the main road, all to save
    you from ~200m of perfectly straightforward main road which
    is certainly quicker and very, very probably safer.

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch University of Dundee Tel 44 1382 660111 ext.
    33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital Fax 44 1382 640177
    Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  15. Gawnsoft

    Gawnsoft Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 15:26:20 +0000, James Hodson
    <[email protected]> wrote (more or less):

    >On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 07:11:17 +0000, Wallace Shackleton
    ><[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >[HUGE SNIP]
    >
    >I wonder exactly what is meant by this:
    >
    >>Cycling Scotland said 80 per cent of households had access
    >>to a bike...
    >
    >I've had access to a bike for most of my life but have
    >ridden cycles only as a child and more recently for the
    >last ten or so years.

    Well what do you mean by 'I've had access to a bike for most
    of my life'?

    Cheers, Euan Gawnsoft: http://www.gawnsoft.co.sr
    Symbian/Epoc wiki: http://html.dnsalias.net:1122 Smalltalk
    links (harvested from comp.lang.smalltalk)
    http://html.dnsalias.net/gawnsoft/smalltalk
     
  16. Nick Kew

    Nick Kew Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    David Hansen <[email protected]> writes:

    >>Correct, but probably not helpful.
    >
    > The idea that cycles are not part of the traffic is one of
    > the most dangerous ideas that road builders have. It
    > encourages the "let's

    In this forum, you're preaching to the choir.

    In any forum where correcting that misapprehension is
    necessary, a mere pedantic point is not sufficient. You'd
    have to explain.

    --
    Nick Kew
     
  17. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 15:26:20 +0000, James Hodson
    <[email protected]> wrote in message
    <[email protected]>:

    >I wonder exactly what is meant by this:
    >>Cycling Scotland said 80 per cent of households had access
    >>to a bike...

    In Glasgow it means that one in ten own a bike and the rest
    have bolt croppers...

    --
    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after
    posting. http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk

    88% of helmet statistics are made up, 65% of them at
    Washington University
     
  18. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 09:30:57 GMT, McBain_v1
    <[email protected]> wrote in message
    <[email protected]>:

    >Until you can edify the engineers, you are going to
    >continue to get absolutely crap "traffic calming"
    >that introduces greater potential for accidents, more
    >marginalisation of cyclists, and god-awful
    >residential layouts.

    Hence the CTC's Benchmarking project, which in my view is a
    Good Thing.

    --
    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after
    posting. http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk

    88% of helmet statistics are made up, 65% of them at
    Washington University
     
  19. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Tue, 16 Mar 2004 15:41:37 +0000, Peter Clinch
    <[email protected]> wrote in message
    <[email protected]>:

    >> So, given that local authorities have budgets to spend on
    >> promoting cycling through road 'improvements', what
    >> should they do?

    >They should consult cyclists (the CTC are an obvious point
    >of contact with their benchmarking scheme)

    Is the right answer.

    --
    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after
    posting. http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk

    88% of helmet statistics are made up, 65% of them at
    Washington University
     
  20. Alex Ingram

    Alex Ingram Guest

    In message <[email protected]
    binary.blueyonder.co.uk>, Fredster
    <[email protected]> writes
    >
    >"Jay Dear" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    >usenet.uk.sun.com...
    >> So, given that local authorities have budgets to spend on
    >> promoting cycling through road 'improvements', what
    >> should they do?
    >>
    >> Where are some good examples of cycle facilities being
    >> implemented?
    >>
    I would say the addition of a large number of bike racks in
    the centre of Edinburgh in recent years ranks pretty highly.

    Low on the list is the cycle lane on the Mound, which I
    think is quite possibly the most dangerous lane I use thanks
    to the combination of a blind corner, high wall, nutters who
    park around the corner and taxis who insist on using the
    lane to turn and buses who have to use it to turn.

    I quite like advance stop lines and marked bus lanes though.
    And there seems to be something nice appearing for NCR 1 up
    at cross causeway, some kind of cycle crossing with a proper
    lights to get across the clerk street part. Looks pretty
    nice, though the road being closed made my route home a
    little tricky last night...
    --
    alex @ nuttyxander.com --+-- http://nuttyxander.com/ *** we
    taught ourselves to play the pots and pans so that we would
    have something honest to dance to ***
     
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