Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Pete Owens
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Pete Owens » 23 Apr 2019, 5:32pm

It is still as stupidly dangerous a manoeuvre - whatever euphemism you would prefer to use.

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mjr
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby mjr » 23 Apr 2019, 5:55pm

It's not dangerous as long as those changing lanes or turning look - like they should. In most countries, that's clear and simple, but the UK's highway code is stupidly inconsistent about it (which is why rules 163, 167 and 168 are a wordy mess and why rule 183 even has a second bullet) and sometimes puts the onus on those going straight ahead along the priority route performing no manoeuvre to take special care or change lanes to the right, which is just plain crazy.
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Wanlock Dod
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Wanlock Dod » 25 Apr 2019, 8:29am

Cugel wrote:
Wanlock Dod wrote:Are there any countries, or regions, which have achieved relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation?


Britain in the 50s. No one could afford a car unless they were very well-orf, in them days. Hordes cycled to and from work as well as elsewhere. I have not only seen the pickshers but the actual hordes, when I was a bairn in Tyneside.


That doesn’t seem to have been especially effective in the long term as a means of enabling cycling given the massive shift away from bikes and into cars over the past sixty years or so, although it has achieved very high levels of driving and very low levels of cycling in most areas.

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Cugel
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Cugel » 25 Apr 2019, 9:25am

Wanlock Dod wrote:
Cugel wrote:
Wanlock Dod wrote:Are there any countries, or regions, which have achieved relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation?


Britain in the 50s. No one could afford a car unless they were very well-orf, in them days. Hordes cycled to and from work as well as elsewhere. I have not only seen the pickshers but the actual hordes, when I was a bairn in Tyneside.


That doesn’t seem to have been especially effective in the long term as a means of enabling cycling given the massive shift away from bikes and into cars over the past sixty years or so, although it has achieved very high levels of driving and very low levels of cycling in most areas.


What doesn't seem "especially effective" at achieving which desired outcome? Is this a chimera to put up against the alternative of having lots of cycling infrastructure, which you hope will increase bicycle use?

Certainly the car has replaced a bicycle as the main mode of travel to work, shop or pleasure ground. This is due to many reasons - many. Those reasons may include "lack of cycling infrastructure" but that will be a teen-weeny reason compared to the other great seductions of car-status-power, human laziness and the advertsing horn recommending the former as a salve for the latter (as well as a mad ego-booster in the consumer psycho-races).

I ride a bike for many reasons but recognise that these reasons aren't shared by most others. Most people don't seem to mind being lazy, unfit, over-weight, polluting of ther air or downrioght dangerous, for example. I'm not put off cycling one iota by a lack of cycling infrastructure since there's loads of cycling infrastructure available AKA the roads. Cycling on the roads is actually safer than walking on the pavements. A lot safer than driving or being in a car........

Well, it is if you're a competant cyclist. Best to learn cycling competancy, then. (Best to learn competancy with anything you do really). The alternative of providing the inept with "safe spaces" for all their activities seems not just a potential money-pit but a means to actually increase the problems of incomeptancy.

Meanwhile, why not improve the already fairly safe roads by insisting drivers become competant? That solves a large number of problems besides that of a wobbly cyclist not having to anticipate a potential car-bite, as he knocks over a child on a shared-use path instead.

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Bmblbzzz » 25 Apr 2019, 10:17am

Wanlock Dod wrote:
Cugel wrote:
Wanlock Dod wrote:Are there any countries, or regions, which have achieved relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation?


Britain in the 50s. No one could afford a car unless they were very well-orf, in them days. Hordes cycled to and from work as well as elsewhere. I have not only seen the pickshers but the actual hordes, when I was a bairn in Tyneside.


That doesn’t seem to have been especially effective in the long term as a means of enabling cycling given the massive shift away from bikes and into cars over the past sixty years or so, although it has achieved very high levels of driving and very low levels of cycling in most areas.

Both a bit off the point. If the 50s could have lasted forever, so might have those "relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation." But then if the 50s lasted forever, we wouldn't even be here.

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Pete Owens » 25 Apr 2019, 4:02pm

mjr wrote:It's not dangerous

Of course it is - and very obviously so. I don't believe even you are daft enough to make a habit of undertaking left turning vehicles.

Highway engineers understand this which is why you have not been able to find a single example of conflicting lane markings for proper traffic to match this:http://www.warringtoncyclecampaign.co.uk/facility-of-the-month/August2001.htm
For cyclists the imperative to prevent us impeding the flow of traffic overrides any consideration of safety.

as long as those changing lanes or turning look - like they should.

This is the identical argument made by those opposing speed limits.
"Driving along the high street at 70mph would be perfectly safe so long as pedestrians looked properly before crossing the road - like they should"

We all should do a last minute "lifesaver" shoulder check before turning right - just in case some moron decides to overtake (ie the exact mirror image of the manoeuvre you are advocating). But the need to look does not in any way give licence to the overtaking moron to excuse their action on the grounds that the person they were overtaking failed to look - like they should.

Safety depends both on acting sensibly AND on others looking in case we get it wrong - not simply relying on other people spotting that you are doing something stupid.

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Pete Owens » 25 Apr 2019, 4:27pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:Both a bit off the point. If the 50s could have lasted forever, so might have those "relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation." But then if the 50s lasted forever, we wouldn't even be here.


Not to forget that since the 50s segregation has been the dominant dogma of town planners and highway engineers. So all our post-war new towns are equipped with segregated cycle networks - and these have all ended up as the most car dependent towns in the country. Whereas the places that have retained significant levels of cycling have tended to be those that have resisted modern planning.

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Bmblbzzz » 25 Apr 2019, 4:58pm

Pete Owens wrote:
Bmblbzzz wrote:Both a bit off the point. If the 50s could have lasted forever, so might have those "relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation." But then if the 50s lasted forever, we wouldn't even be here.


Not to forget that since the 50s segregation has been the dominant dogma of town planners and highway engineers. So all our post-war new towns are equipped with segregated cycle networks - and these have all ended up as the most car dependent towns in the country. Whereas the places that have retained significant levels of cycling have tended to be those that have resisted modern planning.

Yeah, but I think that's also off the point. The reason new towns are so car dependent is not due to the presence or quality of cycle infrastructure, nor walking or public transport, but because they were designed so as to be very easy to drive around (and park in). I've never seen figures on how the non-car traffic shares out between cycling, walking, bus etc for eg Milton Keynes or Stevenage; might be interesting (might also be very similar to other towns).

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Vorpal » 25 Apr 2019, 5:08pm

Pete Owens wrote:
Bmblbzzz wrote:Both a bit off the point. If the 50s could have lasted forever, so might have those "relatively high levels of cycling without significant levels of segregation." But then if the 50s lasted forever, we wouldn't even be here.


Not to forget that since the 50s segregation has been the dominant dogma of town planners and highway engineers. So all our post-war new towns are equipped with segregated cycle networks - and these have all ended up as the most car dependent towns in the country. Whereas the places that have retained significant levels of cycling have tended to be those that have resisted modern planning.

If that were true, the UK might have some decent infrastructure. Segregation has not been the dogma. Lip service to cycling has been the dogma. And that, for the most part means that developers have to include segregation to get planning approval. It doesn't have be good, or joined up to anything else. It doesn't even have to be completed. It just has to be in the development plans.
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby mjr » 25 Apr 2019, 5:32pm

Pete Owens wrote:
mjr wrote:It's not dangerous

Of course it is - and very obviously so. I don't believe even you are daft enough to make a habit of undertaking left turning vehicles.

I'm in the habit of undertaking vehicles that are in a lane from which they could turn left without indicating like so many do - pretty much every time I cycle in rush hour. Cycling would become as slow as driving if I didn't.

Pete Owens wrote:Highway engineers understand this which is why you have not been able to find a single example of conflicting lane markings for proper traffic to match this:http://www.warringtoncyclecampaign.co.uk/facility-of-the-month/August2001.htm

Huh? I wasn't aware I'd even tried to find an example. I'm sure there are some. Here you go, within seconds I found right turn lanes to the left of straight ahead lanes in Melbourne: https://www.google.com/maps/@-37.811954 ... a=!3m1!1e3

Maybe you could try using a search engine for yourself next time? ;)

Pete Owens wrote:For cyclists the imperative to prevent us impeding the flow of traffic overrides any consideration of safety.

As others have noted, this is pretty null safety-wise. Cyclists get left-hooked regardless of lane markings.

Pete Owens wrote:
as long as those changing lanes or turning look - like they should.

This is the identical argument made by those opposing speed limits.
"Driving along the high street at 70mph would be perfectly safe so long as pedestrians looked properly before crossing the road - like they should" [...]

Anti-infrastructuralists often being simultaneously in favour of regulation (speed limits) and against regulation (overtaking both sides) is almost a proof by contradiction of the merits of specific infrastructure!

I also note that pedestrians have right of way, despite legalised bullying by motorists, so the above example is a bit odd anyway.
Pete Owens wrote:Safety depends both on acting sensibly AND on others looking in case we get it wrong - not simply relying on other people spotting that you are doing something stupid.

Well, indeed, but it's perfectly sensible to overtake either side and rely on people changing lanes or turning across lanes to look, same as in many other countries. The exceptions in the UK highway code where cyclists continuing on the primary route are treated as third-class users and expected to give way should be removed and that would make it much simpler.
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby mjr » 25 Apr 2019, 6:02pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:
Pete Owens wrote:Not to forget that since the 50s segregation has been the dominant dogma of town planners and highway engineers. So all our post-war new towns are equipped with segregated cycle networks - and these have all ended up as the most car dependent towns in the country. Whereas the places that have retained significant levels of cycling have tended to be those that have resisted modern planning.

Yeah, but I think that's also off the point. The reason new towns are so car dependent is not due to the presence or quality of cycle infrastructure, nor walking or public transport, but because they were designed so as to be very easy to drive around (and park in). I've never seen figures on how the non-car traffic shares out between cycling, walking, bus etc for eg Milton Keynes or Stevenage; might be interesting (might also be very similar to other towns).

Milton Keynes has usually had average or slightly above-average cycling levels (dead-on average with 11.9% for at least weekly in 2017's gov.uk stats), but low walking (5% below average in the same stats - it's usually reckoned to be because everything except the local shops/school is too far away for most) and low bus use (because buses either stick to the grid roads so don't stop near homes or go through all the traffic-calmed estates to give a slow and uncomfortable ride - look at the bus map of red squiggles and straights at https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=12/5 ... 8&layers=T ), which results in high levels of car dependency.

So while it may be true to call it one of the most car dependent towns in the country, it's rather misleading and doesn't necessarily mean that there's below-average cycling levels - just like the whole portrayal of the redways as an example of a purpose-built cycle network when in reality it was a second-class transport network squeezed in around the first-class road networks - visit the city and while you can cycle, you're left in no doubt that the city fathers originally planned it as a supersize homage to American gridirons with the car as king. It's a pretty damning situation that, 50 years after the first redway was built, MK is only just now looking in danger of being surpassed by another UK city!
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Lance Dopestrong » 26 Apr 2019, 9:53am

Having lived in MK briefly (my first flat was there, although I was away in the Army so never actually slept there much), I can confirm that most of which MJR states is correct.

However, while the incentive for the bone idle lazy to just jump in the car is strong for the reasons MJR cites, it is also a great place to live if you are the sort that does want to cycle. Alas, this is being slowly worn away with time - the Redways, as imperfect as they could be, were extensive and near universal, but they're suffering from neglect and lack of investment. In addition, as the town continues to expand the grid system is being slowly eroded, which has a knock-on effect for the arterial Redway routes which would otherwise have neatly followed them.

It was never pefect, but it was good, and was better than most towns ever enjoyed, even to this day. To have had something so groundreaking, and then to let if degrade through lack of official interest and planning shortsightedness is extremely sad.
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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby StephenW » 27 Apr 2019, 4:57pm

Pete Owens wrote: Quite - so exactly what I said.


No, not exactly! There is an important distinction between
Pete Owens wrote:...assuming unsegregated roads correspond to whichever performs worse.

and what Schepers et al (2011) actually did. If you have another look at my post then this will hopefully become clear.

To be clear, I'm not particular trying to prove that cycleways make junctions safer. What I am trying to do is dispel the notion that it has been conclusively proven that cycleways are much more dangerous than unsegregated roads (and therefore cycleways should not be built). Even a cursory glance at recent peer-reviewed literature shows that this is not the case. For example Thomas and DeRobertis (2013) conduct a review of 23 papers on cycleway safety, and conclude that:

The review indicates that ... when effective intersection treatments are employed, constructing cycle tracks on busy streets reduces collisions and injuries.


https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2012.12.017

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby StephenW » 27 Apr 2019, 5:18pm

Cugel wrote:Certainly the car has replaced a bicycle as the main mode of travel to work, shop or pleasure ground. This is due to many reasons - many. Those reasons may include "lack of cycling infrastructure" but that will be a teen-weeny reason compared to ...


There may indeed be many different reasons for the radical decline in cycling. However, a common finding from numerous surveys and other investigations is that the fear of motor traffic is a very major barrier to cycling in the UK. (https://www.cycling-embassy.org.uk/wiki ... rs-cycling). Phrasing the reason as "lack of cycling infrastructure" is a little muddled. The point is that most people strongly dislike sharing space with fast and busy motor traffic. It is unpleasant. If the speed and volume of motor traffic is low, separate infrastructure is not needed. The speed and volume of motor traffic which most people would deem as acceptable for cycling may be quite a bit lower than experienced cyclists would assume.

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Re: Painted cycle lanes may make roads more dangerous for bike riders

Postby Vorpal » 29 Apr 2019, 2:12pm

Most of the surveys about why people don't cycle are poorly constructed and/or designed to get a particular answer. People will generally pick 'safety' or 'fear of traffic' as the reason when the alternatives are about helmet hair or lack of showers.

I have yet to see a survey that asks questions like, 'if cycling was faster than driving, would you ride your bike to work?' because I'd bet that a significant proportion of the folks who said fear of traffic was why they don't cycle would give a different answer if the questions included speed and convenience. Of if people were helped to get places by bike before they took such a survey.

Surveys of why people don't do things can get poor results when they are reasonably well constructed. When they aren't, they're hopeless.
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