CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

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gaz
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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby gaz » 12 Feb 2017, 6:26pm

mjr wrote:Does CUK leadership reject AGM motions in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists?

The 2016 AGM "Legal minimum passing clearance" Motion
14) Legal minimum passing clearance
The AGM requests a legal requirement for minimum passing clearance when overtaking or near to cyclists, to try and reduce the frequency of motor vehicles passing too close. On roads with speed limits up to and including 30mph or when passing at a speed up to and including 30mph, a 1m minimum is suggested. On roads with higher speed limits, a 1.5m minimum passing distance is suggested. In addition, on narrow roads frequent passing places should be provided.

Council responded to the Motion with the following:
CTC Council disagrees with this motion. Council agrees that close overtaking should be tackled. It’s hazardous for cyclists and extremely intimidating. However, Council remains reluctant to specify a ‘headline’ overtaking distance because (for example) even 1.5m may not be enough in some circumstances and we don’t want to risk giving drivers the impression that it is.

The Highway Code (rather than the law) is better placed to explain optimum overtaking distances because it could state a standard minimum distance, and explain the circumstances in which more space is needed, e.g. on fast roads, in bad weather, etc. When the next revision is announced, we will campaign for various amendments, including clearer advice to drivers on overtaking.

Whilst there is no doubt that the Council were in opposition it was the membership who voted to reject the motion.

Did CUK's membership reject the AGM motion in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists? :|
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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby JohnW » 12 Feb 2017, 6:49pm

gaz wrote:
mjr wrote:Does CUK leadership reject AGM motions in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists?

The 2016 AGM "Legal minimum passing clearance" Motion
14) Legal minimum passing clearance
The AGM requests a legal requirement for minimum passing clearance when overtaking or near to cyclists, to try and reduce the frequency of motor vehicles passing too close. On roads with speed limits up to and including 30mph or when passing at a speed up to and including 30mph, a 1m minimum is suggested. On roads with higher speed limits, a 1.5m minimum passing distance is suggested. In addition, on narrow roads frequent passing places should be provided.

Council responded to the Motion with the following:
CTC Council disagrees with this motion. Council agrees that close overtaking should be tackled. It’s hazardous for cyclists and extremely intimidating. However, Council remains reluctant to specify a ‘headline’ overtaking distance because (for example) even 1.5m may not be enough in some circumstances and we don’t want to risk giving drivers the impression that it is.

The Highway Code (rather than the law) is better placed to explain optimum overtaking distances because it could state a standard minimum distance, and explain the circumstances in which more space is needed, e.g. on fast roads, in bad weather, etc. When the next revision is announced, we will campaign for various amendments, including clearer advice to drivers on overtaking.

Whilst there is no doubt that the Council were in opposition it was the membership who voted to reject the motion.

Did CUK's membership reject the AGM motion in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists? :|


I submit that having a legal minimum passing distance can be counter-productive in some instances. That which is legal is not necessarily either safe or just. If a motorist "buzzes" a cyclist (as they do), and if (in the unlikely event) that motorist is actually prosecuted, his/her clever barrister may ask in court for proof that the motorist was passing too close. I submit that a fixed legal minimum distance honestly won't help.

There is a legal maximum for vertical height of footpath obstructions (I believe it's 19mm, but correct me if I'm wrong). If someone, say elderly or a bit disabled, or even sight-impaired trips on an 18mm trip hazard, in the dark, on unlit footpath, then it's his fault legally, no matter what injury is caused - the local council has complied with the law and they are therefore perfect. I tell you, an HGV doing 50, overtaking a cyclist giving 1.501m clearance is b****y dangerous, but it'd still be the cyclists fault if he was unseated.

If there's going to be a law then the lawmakers need to have the experience to know enough to understand the situation.

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby mjr » 12 Feb 2017, 11:05pm

Of course 1.5m may not be enough sometimes, but an extra passing law would not remove the possibility of prosecution under existing offences. Is it really a case of letting perfection be the enemy of improvement? I doubt it but I'm not sure which of the more likely reasons it is. It's really hard to understand why council wants to persist with the failed education approach when even constabularies are giving up on it.
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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby JohnW » 12 Feb 2017, 11:34pm

mjr wrote:Of course 1.5m may not be enough sometimes, but an extra passing law would not remove the possibility of prosecution under existing offences. Is it really a case of letting perfection be the enemy of improvement? I doubt it but I'm not sure which of the more likely reasons it is. It's really hard to understand why council wants to persist with the failed education approach when even constabularies are giving up on it.


If a vehicle comes past you and unseats you then that's dangerous, irrespective of a 1.5m law. If the law says 1.5m, then the motorist will say that he did give you 1.5m and therefore it's your fault. Neither of you can prove the exact distance, and the motorist's clever barrister will soon talk any court (if it came to that) into a verdict that it was your fault, because the 1.5m is his word against yours.................and will anyone believe a cyclist?

For the police to take action they'll ask you to prove that the vehicle came within 1.5m - they'll ask if you're sure that you were cycling in a straight line. I submit that they'd be less likely to get involved with that law in place than without - would they take action if they weren't certain that a crime had been committed?

If the vehicle had unseated you then at least there'd be a smashed bike and possibly a smashed cyclist as evidence, even without a 1.5m law.

Others may submit that at least a 1.5m law would give something for police/witnesses/legal eagles to start with.

Also, are we sure that drivers will not interpret the 1.5m as being 1.5m in from the kerb. Am I cynical? - well, I've been cycling a long time................

It's all fraught with questions, isn't it?

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 10:23am

JohnW wrote:
gaz wrote:
mjr wrote:Does CUK leadership reject AGM motions in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists?

The 2016 AGM "Legal minimum passing clearance" Motion
14) Legal minimum passing clearance
The AGM requests a legal requirement for minimum passing clearance when overtaking or near to cyclists, to try and reduce the frequency of motor vehicles passing too close. On roads with speed limits up to and including 30mph or when passing at a speed up to and including 30mph, a 1m minimum is suggested. On roads with higher speed limits, a 1.5m minimum passing distance is suggested. In addition, on narrow roads frequent passing places should be provided.

Council responded to the Motion with the following:
CTC Council disagrees with this motion. Council agrees that close overtaking should be tackled. It’s hazardous for cyclists and extremely intimidating. However, Council remains reluctant to specify a ‘headline’ overtaking distance because (for example) even 1.5m may not be enough in some circumstances and we don’t want to risk giving drivers the impression that it is.

The Highway Code (rather than the law) is better placed to explain optimum overtaking distances because it could state a standard minimum distance, and explain the circumstances in which more space is needed, e.g. on fast roads, in bad weather, etc. When the next revision is announced, we will campaign for various amendments, including clearer advice to drivers on overtaking.

Whilst there is no doubt that the Council were in opposition it was the membership who voted to reject the motion.

Did CUK's membership reject the AGM motion in support of passing laws because it's actually full of dangerous motorists? :|


I submit that having a legal minimum passing distance can be counter-productive in some instances. That which is legal is not necessarily either safe or just. If a motorist "buzzes" a cyclist (as they do), and if (in the unlikely event) that motorist is actually prosecuted, his/her clever barrister may ask in court for proof that the motorist was passing too close. I submit that a fixed legal minimum distance honestly won't help....

I agree except that no law is perfect. There are 30 speed limits where doing 30 is very dangerous yet we still support the principle of speed limits because in many cases they do make things safer.

There are undoubtedly many examples where a 1.5m pass is too close and instances where 1.5m is more than needed. The "more than needed" does not concern me as few cyclists would complain abut being given too much passing space. In the few instances where 1.5m is inadequate then I would hope it would be covered by other laws. The nature of some vehicles places additional constraints on their use and one expects the drivers of such vehicles to drive appropriately/safely and if they fail to do so one would hope they would be pursued under general safety laws.

Appart from the safety aspects of close passes, they also discourage many who start cycling but quickly stop because of close passes (either to themselves or their children). To me the motion is central to what the CTC should be about (in it's new guise and as CUK - core stuff). It is particularly surprising that they rejected the motion and very disappointing that they did not instead setup a committee/board/group to look at what they consider an appropriate passing clearance law should be. They rejected the motion because they felt it not necessarily always enough, etc. yet they completely failed to even start to look into what is appropriate. To me this is just a "not invented here" syndrome and reflects very badly on the organisation. It is 110% what they should be about (impacting bother cyclist safety AND encouraging more to start cycling).

Ian

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby mjr » 13 Feb 2017, 11:07am

JohnW wrote:
mjr wrote:Of course 1.5m may not be enough sometimes, but an extra passing law would not remove the possibility of prosecution under existing offences. Is it really a case of letting perfection be the enemy of improvement? I doubt it but I'm not sure which of the more likely reasons it is. It's really hard to understand why council wants to persist with the failed education approach when even constabularies are giving up on it.


If a vehicle comes past you and unseats you then that's dangerous, irrespective of a 1.5m law. If the law says 1.5m, then the motorist will say that he did give you 1.5m and therefore it's your fault. Neither of you can prove the exact distance, and the motorist's clever barrister will soon talk any court (if it came to that) into a verdict that it was your fault, because the 1.5m is his word against yours.................and will anyone believe a cyclist?

I don't see why a 1.5m law would necessarily make this situation any worse than it currently is, where mostly nothing happens, in my experience. Could some 1.5m law opponent explain what they think currently happens? Ideally with a famous case or two of a driver being prosecuted for unseating a rider by close-passing?

JohnW wrote:It's all fraught with questions, isn't it?

No more than anything else. That's part of why there's a bicameral legislature refining what becomes law. I'm sure they'd iron such piffling things out, especially if they took the excellent advice of the All-Party Parliamentary Cycling Group and the Active Travel Alliance.
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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 11:35am

mjr wrote:
JohnW wrote:
mjr wrote:Of course 1.5m may not be enough sometimes, but an extra passing law would not remove the possibility of prosecution under existing offences. Is it really a case of letting perfection be the enemy of improvement? I doubt it but I'm not sure which of the more likely reasons it is. It's really hard to understand why council wants to persist with the failed education approach when even constabularies are giving up on it.


If a vehicle comes past you and unseats you then that's dangerous, irrespective of a 1.5m law. If the law says 1.5m, then the motorist will say that he did give you 1.5m and therefore it's your fault. Neither of you can prove the exact distance, and the motorist's clever barrister will soon talk any court (if it came to that) into a verdict that it was your fault, because the 1.5m is his word against yours.................and will anyone believe a cyclist?

I don't see why a 1.5m law would necessarily make this situation any worse than it currently is, where mostly nothing happens, in my experience. Could some 1.5m law opponent explain what they think currently happens? Ideally with a famous case or two of a driver being prosecuted for unseating a rider by close-passing?

JohnW wrote:It's all fraught with questions, isn't it?

No more than anything else. That's part of why there's a bicameral legislature refining what becomes law. I'm sure they'd iron such piffling things out, especially if they took the excellent advice of the All-Party Parliamentary Cycling Group and the Active Travel Alliance.

I think this is another aspect where the CTC/CUK have got it completely wrong. The motion is not about creating a law. The CTC/CUK are not going to be creating a law (it's beyond their powers to create legislation). The real and best the CTC/CUK could achieve is to convince Government that close passes need to be addressed through legislation. Government then, if they could be persuaded to accept the need would then write a document, start a consultation where experts, interested parties (including the CTC/CUK), public, etc. could contribute thoughts, etc., etc. And then hopefully, we end-up with something sensible, as it will have gone through an extensive reviews, modified by experts, etc., etc.

Phrasing it as "1.5m passing law" is not creating legislation - it is just the way to kick-off the process. Vague wishes like "address that some motor vehicles sometimes pass too close to cyclists" will never start any process for change. "1.5m passing clearance" is concise, identifies the problem, etc. Better details come later and CTC/CUK would get the opportunity to comment on specific government proposals.

I also think that another central issue missed by the CTC/CUK (and others) is the word "legal" in that a law is needed, not just a sentence hidden away in the Highway code masked by a "should". A "should" hidden sentence in the Highway Code would not be noticed by 99% of drivers who have already passed their test and those 1% who do notice will also appreciate that there is no real power of enforcement. It would take years before any significant percentage of drivers were even aware of the hidden away sentence. But a law change gives immediate powers to the Police, would have some associated publicity (hopefully even the Daily Mail would run a "Drivers Further Oppressed by New Law" - I'm sure they'll come-up with some (anti-cyclist) twaddle of a headline - but it will spread word of a new law).

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby PH » 13 Feb 2017, 12:14pm

Psamathe wrote:I think this is another aspect where the CTC/CUK have got it completely wrong. The motion is not about creating a law. The CTC/CUK are not going to be creating a law (it's beyond their powers to create legislation). The real and best the CTC/CUK could achieve is to convince Government that close passes need to be addressed through legislation. Government then, if they could be persuaded to accept the need would then write a document, start a consultation where experts, interested parties (including the CTC/CUK), public, etc. could contribute thoughts, etc., etc. And then hopefully, we end-up with something sensible, as it will have gone through an extensive reviews, modified by experts, etc., etc.Ian

I disagree that the AGM got it wrong, though I think the rest is a fair and reasonable analysis. The vote at the last AGM wasn’t a poll about whether or not the membership thought a passing law was a good idea, it was about whether or not to instruct the organisation to pursue it. I voted against, not on the basis of disagreeing with the idea, but because I believe how and where to best deploy the campaigning resources is an operational matter. I wouldn’t want to see an AGM instruct the organisation to do something they didn’t think achievable to the detriment of something that was.

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 12:26pm

PH wrote:
Psamathe wrote:I think this is another aspect where the CTC/CUK have got it completely wrong. The motion is not about creating a law. The CTC/CUK are not going to be creating a law (it's beyond their powers to create legislation). The real and best the CTC/CUK could achieve is to convince Government that close passes need to be addressed through legislation. Government then, if they could be persuaded to accept the need would then write a document, start a consultation where experts, interested parties (including the CTC/CUK), public, etc. could contribute thoughts, etc., etc. And then hopefully, we end-up with something sensible, as it will have gone through an extensive reviews, modified by experts, etc., etc.Ian

I disagree that the AGM got it wrong, though I think the rest is a fair and reasonable analysis. The vote at the last AGM wasn’t a poll about whether or not the membership thought a passing law was a good idea, it was about whether or not to instruct the organisation to pursue it. I voted against, not on the basis of disagreeing with the idea, but because I believe how and where to best deploy the campaigning resources is an operational matter. I wouldn’t want to see an AGM instruct the organisation to do something they didn’t think achievable to the detriment of something that was.

The reasons the CTC/CUK gave for disagreeing were
CTC Council disagrees with this motion. Council agrees that close overtaking should be tackled. It’s hazardous for cyclists and extremely intimidating. However, Council remains reluctant to specify a ‘headline’ overtaking distance because (for example) even 1.5m may not be enough in some circumstances and we don’t want to risk giving drivers the impression that it is.

The Highway Code (rather than the law) is better placed to explain optimum overtaking distances because it could state a standard minimum distance, and explain the circumstances in which more space is needed, e.g. on fast roads, in bad weather, etc. When the next revision is announced, we will campaign for various amendments, including clearer advice to drivers on overtaking.

They were not saying they disagreed because of e.g. "limited campaigning resource" or how best to deploy their resources. If those were the reasons the CTC/CUK disagreed with the motion then they should have stated that e.g. said"Whilst we agree with the motion, the CTC/CUK is an organisation with limited resources and as such has to focus its efforts where they can deliver best results for ..." But they gave completely different reasons for disagreeing with the motion.

And, with respect to the membership disagreeing with the motion, do you think the membership would have voted against the motion had the CTC/CUK supported it ?

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby PH » 13 Feb 2017, 12:40pm

Psamathe wrote:The reasons the CTC/CUK gave for disagreeing were
...........................

Well I've given the reasons I voted against.
There was a commitment given at the AGM (I was there) to look at the evidence from those countries that have such legislation, whether this has happened or not and if any conclusion drawn, I don't know.
And, with respect to the membership disagreeing with the motion, do you think the membership would have voted against the motion had the CTC/CUK supported it ?

Well again, I can only speak for myself. If the council had thought the motion worth perusing and I agreed then I would have voted for it.
Of course if they'd wanted to pursue it then it wouldn't have needed a AGM motion to do so. Nor does rejecting the motion mean they can’t do so at another time.

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby mjr » 13 Feb 2017, 1:58pm

PH wrote:I voted against, not on the basis of disagreeing with the idea, but because I believe how and where to best deploy the campaigning resources is an operational matter. I wouldn’t want to see an AGM instruct the organisation to do something they didn’t think achievable to the detriment of something that was.

There's no sign of CUK doing anything on this issue and I'm disappointed that anyone thinks the operational staff should be deciding what campaigns to adopt (which is different to deciding what resources to allocate to which - that motion was not allocating resources).
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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 2:12pm

mjr wrote:
PH wrote:I voted against, not on the basis of disagreeing with the idea, but because I believe how and where to best deploy the campaigning resources is an operational matter. I wouldn’t want to see an AGM instruct the organisation to do something they didn’t think achievable to the detriment of something that was.

There's no sign of CUK doing anything on this issue and I'm disappointed that anyone thinks the operational staff should be deciding what campaigns to adopt (which is different to deciding what resources to allocate to which - that motion was not allocating resources).

They could even have put their name in with the BC campaign just to add a bit of additional weight to that campaign (not taking much "resource").

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Steady rider » 13 Feb 2017, 2:25pm

The police have a lot of common sense and some forces are acting to deter close passing. It is the right thing to do. By CTC/CUK Council advising AGAINST the motion, they undermine efforts to take it forward. This years AGM may include a similar motion,

That Cycling UK shall campaign with others, where possible, for improvement in the advice regarding minimum passing distance for motor vehicles passing cyclists and to press for compliance with the introduction of a statuary law on passing distance.
Reasons
So that cyclist feel less threatened and to assist in promoting cycling and improve safety, as it is essential to discourage intimidating close passing.


Lets hope they can manage to offer some support and work to try and deliver a good outcome to improve safety. The precise wording of legislation and enforcement aspects would involve the police, DfT, and Parliament etc. A 'Passing law' is needed and mainly to deter close passing by imposing fines, relatively few cases would go to court. About 1% of current passes would be suitable for fines, nearly 1 million per day. The Council's response and excuses are not valid.

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 2:45pm

Steady rider wrote:The police have a lot of common sense and some forces are acting to deter close passing. It is the right thing to do. By CTC/CUK Council advising AGAINST the motion, they undermine efforts to take it forward. This years AGM may include a similar motion,

That Cycling UK shall campaign with others, where possible, for improvement in the advice regarding minimum passing distance for motor vehicles passing cyclists and to press for compliance with the introduction of a statuary law on passing distance.
Reasons
So that cyclist feel less threatened and to assist in promoting cycling and improve safety, as it is essential to discourage intimidating close passing.


Lets hope they can manage to offer some support and work to try and deliver a good outcome to improve safety. The precise wording of legislation and enforcement aspects would involve the police, DfT, and Parliament etc. A 'Passing law' is needed and mainly to deter close passing by imposing fines, relatively few cases would go to court. About 1% of current passes would be suitable for fines, nearly 1 million per day. The Council's response and excuses are not valid.

I think the motion and everything needs to focus on a law and avoid the easy out route of a wording change in the Highway Code.

Ian

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Re: CANDIDATES FOR THE CTC/CUK ELECTION

Postby Si » 13 Feb 2017, 4:35pm

No point in having law changes if they are not going to be policed (eg mobile phone laws). Thus, to me the motion is a halfway measure, not likely to do much good, could even cause harm......"you asked for a law change, we gave you a law change, our job is done, no need for anymore effort". To make it worth anything it also needs a commitment to campaign to have it policed and publicised fully.

On the other hand, where we do see a bit of rigorous policing of close passing (e.g. the WMs), they seem to be getting on with it without a law change.