Impossible traffic situations

For discussions within the Cycle Training profession.

Impossible traffic situations

Postby James » 4 Feb 2006, 8:03pm

I have found that, even though I cycle confidently, decisively and according to the highway code, there are some situations where I have to stop cycling altogether due to the inability to get out in front of fast moving traffic. I have in mind one particular section of road where a busy single lane road becomes two lanes and bends slightly to the left as it approaches a roundabout. In order to get to my destination I need to be in the right hand lane. However, getting into this lane in heavy traffic is very nearly impossible as the cars have very little space between each other and are driving very fast. Further, if the move into the right hand lane is left too late I am round the bend and invisible to the traffic coming up. A move into the right hand lane is complicated here by having to start off from a stationary position meaning it will take longer, as well as by the cars coming round and not seeing until the last minute that I am there.

I find this frustrating as I believe it is purely unthinking road planning and a policy that favours the car that is the cause of this.

Andy Tallis

Re:Impossible traffic situations

Postby Andy Tallis » 5 Feb 2006, 9:37am

Sounds annoying and I know what you mean. All I can suggest is being assertive and trying to get over to the right hand side as soon as possible - perhaps before the lane splits? Does sound dodgy though. But who can expect road planners to be aware of the existence of the bicycle? Bicycles have been around so much longer than cars it's easy to forget them!

Andy :-)


Postby sbowler » 18 Feb 2007, 5:59pm

Same situation as myself, its a very daunting prospect getting across one lane of fast moving traffic into the correct lane, and unfortunately its this kind of road design that prevents many people cycling to work instead of takeing the car.
As for reducing car journeys, why dont the governemt make rush hour bus travel free or reduce the fares by 50%

Posts: 253
Joined: 4 Feb 2007, 3:34pm

Postby Sares » 28 Feb 2007, 9:35pm

One problem with this sort of situation is that I find drivers have very little tolerance of cyclists in the right hand lane. It bothers them somehow and they will sometimes get quite agitated, honk, or pass where they shouldn't.

So, if you go to the right lane too early, you might get some odd driver behaviour.

Paul Power
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Joined: 2 Feb 2007, 12:52pm

Postby Paul Power » 1 Mar 2007, 3:04pm

The situations/experiences described in the posts are all too familar and this is where National Standards Training can greatly improve your confidence and give you the skills necessary to ride in those situations.

What you should do is find an accreddited Cycle Training Centre near to where you live (the CTC have a list of all instructors/schools covering the UK available on this website) and book yourself on a Level 3 Course. These courses are designed to take you through what's involved in riding competently in the situations you describe.

Hope that's helpful.

Paul Power