E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

niggle
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E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby niggle » 24 Oct 2009, 8:04am

This came via Facebook :roll: : http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/3feet2Pass/ It is a campaign originating in the US: http://www.3feet2pass.com/ so maybe 1 Metre 2 Pass would be better for us Europeans :wink:

Of course there is a concern that those car drivers who currently give us six feet will feel its OK to pass closer, but IMO that is a minor issue compared with getting those that are currently giving us less than three feet to give us at least that much: what do people think?

reohn2
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 8:16am

Three feet or 1 metre isn't anywhere near enough,it needs to be five feet or 1.5meters IMO.
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niggle
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby niggle » 24 Oct 2009, 9:25am

reohn2 wrote:Three feet or 1 metre isn't anywhere near enough,it needs to be five feet or 1.5meters IMO.


In principle I agree. In practice if this law had teeth and there was a real prospect of prosecution* then the vast majority of motorists would err on the side of caution and give us substantially more than three feet, as they cannot judge the distance accurately enough, particularly at speed.

At present all we have is the Highway Code Rule 163: "You should give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car", and we all know that in practice many drivers are either ignorant of that, or not too bothered about following it. Notice it says 'should' not 'must' so it is not law and anyway its pretty ambiguous, i.e. does it mean give us a whole lane or does it mean give us the 6" mirror-to-mirror clearance they give when passing another car in tight spot?

*As to how you would enforce a three feet law I really do not know, violation would be harder to prove than using a mobile phone when driving, for instance. Maybe police patrol vehicle video camera footage would be admissible? Then you have the problem that violation would only be prosecuted if spotted by traffic police, which, as with mobile phone use, will be so rare that motorists will simply carry on regardless 99% of the time.

reohn2
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 10:01am

niggle wrote:
reohn2 wrote:Three feet or 1 metre isn't anywhere near enough,it needs to be five feet or 1.5meters IMO.


In principle I agree. In practice if this law had teeth and there was a real prospect of prosecution* then the vast majority of motorists would err on the side of caution and give us substantially more than three feet, as they cannot judge the distance accurately enough, particularly at speed.

At present all we have is the Highway Code Rule 163: "You should give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car", and we all know that in practice many drivers are either ignorant of that, or not too bothered about following it. Notice it says 'should' not 'must' so it is not law and anyway its pretty ambiguous, i.e. does it mean give us a whole lane or does it mean give us the 6" mirror-to-mirror clearance they give when passing another car in tight spot?

*As to how you would enforce a three feet law I really do not know, violation would be harder to prove than using a mobile phone when driving, for instance. Maybe police patrol vehicle video camera footage would be admissible? Then you have the problem that violation would only be prosecuted if spotted by traffic police, which, as with mobile phone use, will be so rare that motorists will simply carry on regardless 99% of the time.


As you say we already have a Highway code rule,which is pointless to some motorists as they don't read it.
The cyclists problem is having motorists passing too close, how a three feet (1 metre) law makes this any better mystifies me,if motorists can't judge "a cars width" either by not being aware of Highway code 163,or by thinking that just missing a cyclists is ample room they shouldn't be on the road at all.
A three feet rule won't make any difference to the offenders we suffer at the moment, and will encourage those giving cyclists ample room (the width of a car and more) to come closer.
Five feet is a comfortable margin three feet is definately not.
To my mind anyone who signs that petition is either misguided or compromising my safety and as such I don't want anything to do with it.
A petition that puts the onus on the motorist to act and drive responsably by making it law that a motor vehicle in collision with a vulnerable road user ie Pedestrian,cyclist,motorcyclist,horserider,invalid carriage, etc is automatically at fault unless proven otherwise with a suitable fine(minimum £1000) and an automatic 6 week driving ban may be worth my signiture.
As for a three feet minimum forget it,its lunacy.
We've got to get used to the fact that we live in a land with an ever increasing number of loonies,a land run by loonies,the none loonies, ie sane people, are increasingly looked on as insane by the insane, whilst the insane are running the show.Three feet is insanity
PS You may have noticed my feeling run deep on the subject.
Last edited by reohn2 on 24 Oct 2009, 10:21am, edited 1 time in total.
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paulah
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby paulah » 24 Oct 2009, 10:14am

niggle wrote:Of course there is a concern that those car drivers who currently give us six feet will feel its OK to pass closer, but IMO that is a minor issue compared with getting those that are currently giving us less than three feet to give us at least that much: what do people think?


They set speed limits to 20 in residential areas in the expectation that it'll keep most motorists below 30 - to get a driver to keep below 30, tell him to do 20. By the same logic, if we want 3 feet as a minumum, we'll have to ask for more. Asking for 3 feet will simply result in many drivers think that must be more than enough for safety and will overtake more closely.
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George Riches
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby George Riches » 24 Oct 2009, 10:46am

This would mean the end of sub-standard cycle lanes. A lot depends on the motorist's speed doesn't it?

Still a more realistic idea than that "stricter liability" idea. Perhaps the same rule should apply when cyclists overtake pedestrians.

niggle
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby niggle » 24 Oct 2009, 11:03am

paulah wrote:
niggle wrote:Of course there is a concern that those car drivers who currently give us six feet will feel its OK to pass closer, but IMO that is a minor issue compared with getting those that are currently giving us less than three feet to give us at least that much: what do people think?


They set speed limits to 20 in residential areas in the expectation that it'll keep most motorists below 30 - to get a driver to keep below 30, tell him to do 20. By the same logic, if we want 3 feet as a minumum, we'll have to ask for more. Asking for 3 feet will simply result in many drivers think that must be more than enough for safety and will overtake more closely.


I don't agree, if the driver thinks he will get caught and prosecuted for doing 21mph he will do < 20mph, just like all those idiots who hit the brakes when they see a speed camera even though they are already travelling under the speed limit. The issue is about enforcement IMO, if the drivers don't think they will get caught they will continue to pass as close as ever, whether the law says three feet or ten, but if they think they have a genuine risk of prosecution they will give themselves room for error as with speed cameras and pass at a couple of feet further way than the law says, further still at speed as this makes judging it harder.

At present I am sure the vast majority of drivers are only concerned with making sure they don't actually hit a cyclist and of those that currently pass us with three feet or more of separation I think the majority do so simply because they cannot be sure of missing a cyclist if they get any closer, they just cannot judge it that accurately, ergo if the law says you must give 3' and they think they could get caught if they break that law they will give 5'+

Another way of looking at it: watch as a friend drives a car past a concrete bollard at 30mph and observe how much clearance they give it. Now get them to try it again with a 3 foot long metal spike sticking out: I would be willing to bet they give the end of the spike as much room as they previously gave the side of the bollard, quite possibly more. The spike represents a risk of scratching the car, a well enforced law about giving 3 feet of clearance would mean a more serious risk of prosecution, fine, penalty points, possible license suspension.

Trouble is I cannot imagine the law being enforced adequately so it would be almost* a complete waste of time (but I don't agree that it would make things worse).

* I can imagine it being useful in prosecution of drivers at fault following a serious accident.

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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 1:54pm

George Riches wrote:This would mean the end of sub-standard cycle lanes. A lot depends on the motorist's speed doesn't it?

Still a more realistic idea than that "stricter liability" idea. Perhaps the same rule should apply when cyclists overtake pedestrians.


I agree,as it would make all road users "up the food chain" drive/ride with more responsibility and thought for the more vulnerable road users,instead of the dog eat dog,might is right,situation we now find ourselves in.
An attitude made worse by a completely ineffective police force.
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reohn2
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 2:06pm

niggle wrote:
...........Trouble is I cannot imagine the law being enforced adequately so it would be almost* a complete waste of time........


If the law won't/can't be enforced, then we should be campaigning for more and better policing instead of the shambles the policeforce has become.


(but I don't agree that it would make things worse)...........


It is therefore a complete waste of my time and everyone elses to sign a petition that won't make things any better either,which clearly this"law"won't,as firstly there aren't enough police with either will or determination to see it through,or the kind of punishments to stop motorists from frightening the life out of unsuspecting vulnerable road users.
This petition is a complete joke and further more it wouldn't surprise me if it was formed by some motorist group or other.
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niggle
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby niggle » 24 Oct 2009, 3:13pm

reohn2 wrote:It is therefore a complete waste of my time and everyone elses to sign a petition that won't make things any better either,which clearly this"law"won't,as firstly there aren't enough police with either will or determination to see it through,or the kind of punishments to stop motorists from frightening the life out of unsuspecting vulnerable road users.


So what do you suggest then? IMO the presence of a law at least would make it easier to complain about lack of enforcement IYSWIM. Without it we are just whinging about some theoretical and ill defined notion in the Highway Code that has no basis in law, so why would valuable police time be spent on it when it would be hard to even pin an offence to it, never mind get a prosecution. I see it in terms of social memes, an example being drinking and driving where acceptance was the norm for decades but, with changes in the law followed by improved enforcement, gradually opinion changed to a point where now the vast majority now regard it as immoral as well as irresponsible. I believe that this will happen with mobile phone use over time and with the right approach it could also happen with the issue of passing vulnerable road users safely, but if we don't get anything on the statute books its a non-starter IMO

reohn2 wrote:This petition is a complete joke and further more it wouldn't surprise me if it was formed by some motorist group or other.


Wow, that is some conspiracy theory!

reohn2
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 4:13pm

niggle wrote:
reohn2 wrote:It is therefore a complete waste of my time and everyone elses to sign a petition that won't make things any better either,which clearly this"law"won't,as firstly there aren't enough police with either will or determination to see it through,or the kind of punishments to stop motorists from frightening the life out of unsuspecting vulnerable road users.


So what do you suggest then? IMO the presence of a law at least would make it easier to complain about lack of enforcement IYSWIM. Without it we are just whinging about some theoretical and ill defined notion in the Highway Code that has no basis in law, so why would valuable police time be spent on it when it would be hard to even pin an offence to it, never mind get a prosecution. I see it in terms of social memes, an example being drinking and driving where acceptance was the norm for decades but, with changes in the law followed by improved enforcement, gradually opinion changed to a point where now the vast majority now regard it as immoral as well as irresponsible. I believe that this will happen with mobile phone use over time and with the right approach it could also happen with the issue of passing vulnerable road users safely, but if we don't get anything on the statute books its a non-starter IMO


I only wish I had your optimism,we have enough trouble in this country trying to lock real villans away due to mamby pamby laws,bad/undermanned policeforces,slick lawers,and downright bad laws where by if a police officer (in the unlikely event one should be around when any offence is committed)doesn't cross all the t's and dot the i's a good barrister will walk all over him in court,thats if it ever comes to court,ie if the powers that be consider it worth it.
As I said before we'd do better with a petition for a more and better police officers than laws that can't or won't be enforced.Please see my previous posts.
Until people want to live in a better society than the one we've(the UK)has sunk to, we are wasting our time,I for one have no,thats no faith in the British justice system,no thats no faith in the British government and even less in a law that cannot be enforced.
Sorry to be so pesimistic but seeing what I see constantly going on around me I am frankly utterly ashamed to be associated with this country.

reohn2 wrote:This petition is a complete joke and further more it wouldn't surprise me if it was formed by some motorist group or other.


Wow, that is some conspiracy theory! [/quote]

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orbiter
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby orbiter » 24 Oct 2009, 5:19pm

A a law this would be pointless. As a campaign (on billboards, etc), to make drivers (and cyclists) more aware of the space they should give, it might be useful. But NOT three feet! What's wrong with ....
keepYourDistanceSign.jpg

reohn2
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby reohn2 » 24 Oct 2009, 7:15pm

orbiter wrote:A a law this would be pointless. As a campaign (on billboards, etc), to make drivers (and cyclists) more aware of the space they should give, it might be useful. But NOT three feet! What's wrong with ....
keepYourDistanceSign.jpg


I quite agree!
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sirmy
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby sirmy » 24 Oct 2009, 7:25pm

Wasn't there a "Cyclists need three feet" campaign in the 80's - makes a slightly amusing slogan at least

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frank9755
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Re: E-Petition: 3 Feet 2 Pass

Postby frank9755 » 24 Oct 2009, 9:58pm

orbiter wrote:A a law this would be pointless. As a campaign (on billboards, etc), to make drivers (and cyclists) more aware of the space they should give, it might be useful. But NOT three feet! What's wrong with ....
keepYourDistanceSign.jpg


Agreed, 3 feet is aiming far to low (or narrow)
I believe that their is now a law in Spain saying vehicles must leave 1.5m.
I saw (just one) road sign in France this summer like this one, saying 1.5m.