2 abreast riding

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MikeF
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby MikeF » 12 Nov 2017, 11:54am

pwa wrote:Crossing continuous white lines is not illegal under all circumstances. I believe it is allowed where you can see the road ahead to be clear for far enough, and the thing you are passing is moving very slowly. But my understanding is that we are talking about hings moving at the speed of road sweepers.
If you follow TC's link (and it takes some finding!) you will find when you are permitted to cross a continuous white line. Your belief looks wrong. In more detail:-
No stopping or crossing white line marking

9.—(1) The requirements conveyed to vehicular traffic on roads by a road marking provided for at items 23 and 24 of the sign table in Part 6 of this Schedule are that—

(a)subject to sub-paragraphs (2) to (4), no vehicle is to stop on any length of road along which the marking has been placed at any point between the ends of the marking; and

(b)subject to sub-paragraph (5), every vehicle proceeding on any length of road along which the marking has been so placed, as viewed in the direction of travel of the vehicle, a continuous line is on the left of a broken line or of another continuous line, must be so driven as to keep the first-mentioned continuous line on the right hand or off side of the vehicle.


(5) Nothing in sub-paragraph (1)(b) is to be taken to prohibit a vehicle from being driven across, or so as to straddle, the continuous line referred to in that paragraph, if it is safe to do so and if necessary to do so—

(a)to enable the vehicle to enter, from the side of the road on which it is proceeding, land or premises adjacent to the length of road on which the line is placed, or another road joining that road;

(b)in order to pass a stationary vehicle;

(c)owing to circumstances outside the control of the driver;

(d)in order to avoid an accident;

(e)in order to pass a road maintenance vehicle which is in use, is moving at a speed not exceeding 10 mph, and is displaying to the rear a sign provided for at item 9 or 10 of the sign table in Part 6 of Schedule 13;

(f)in order to pass a pedal cycle moving at a speed not exceeding 10 mph;

(g)in order to pass a horse that is being ridden or led at a speed not exceeding 10 mph; or

(h)for the purposes of complying with any direction of a constable in uniform, a traffic officer in uniform or a traffic warden.


However this is the paragraph I find most irritating! It is almost a right for motorists to squidge cyclists.
Cyclists to give way

8. A cycle must not be ridden across the transverse line provided for at item 9 of the sign table in Part 6 of this Schedule in a manner or at a time that is likely to endanger any person, or to cause the driver of another vehicle to change its speed or course in order to avoid an accident.
By accident I think collision is meant! :wink: This is where a sign stating "cyclists rejoin(ing) the carriageway is needed.
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

thirdcrank
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby thirdcrank » 12 Nov 2017, 1:59pm

MikeF wrote:... If you follow TC's link (and it takes some finding!) you will find when you are permitted to cross a continuous white line. Your belief looks wrong. In more detail:- ...

It's true there is a lot of material in the TSRGD, and, unlike Acts of Parliament, the online version isn't broken into chunks: a link takes you to the whole lot and you have to search through. The bit I quoted is the bit which permits a driver to cross or straddle the solid white line to overtake a cyclist in certain circumstances. I edited out everything else for clarity. And I did quote "chapter and verse" (or rather part, section, sub-section and all the rest of the fiddly stuff.) I'm happy to stand by what I did quote as the law on crossing (or indeed straddling) a solid white line to overtake a cyclist. (Put another way, what does eg the line about a maintenance vehicle add to this discussion?)

However this is the paragraph I find most irritating! It is almost a right for motorists to squidge cyclists.
Cyclists to give way

8. A cycle must not be ridden across the transverse line provided for at item 9 of the sign table in Part 6 of this Schedule in a manner or at a time that is likely to endanger any person, or to cause the driver of another vehicle to change its speed or course in order to avoid an accident.
By accident I think collision is meant! :wink: This is where a sign stating "cyclists rejoin(ing) the carriageway is needed.

As I said, there's a lot of this stuff and a lot of it is very thread-to-needle (probably part of the reason why it no longer gets enforced.) The bit that you have take exception to here is the standard definition of GIVE WAY and if you look back in there at STOP, GIVE WAY and several others, exactly the same words are used. (In relation to the STP sign, it does say "stop and" before all that stuff.) Instead of CYCLISTS DISMOUNT signs, CYCLISTS REJOIN THE CARRIAGEWAY is now preferred and it comes with GIVE WAY lines.

On the matter of "accident" when they are churning out this stuff they do choose their words carefully and "accident" means more than simply "collision." I'm pretty sure I've posted before that in the early days of the breathalyser - now almost 50 years ago - a case involving a driver who had not been involved in a collision but had had some sort of incident with a kerb or somesuch, went all the way on appeal to the House of Lords, as it then was, on the grounds that the police had used the power under what was the Road Safety Act 1967 to require a breath sample after an "accident" when there hadn't been one. Unfortunately, I cannot provide a link because this type of thing isn't easily found on line, but their Lordships ruled something on the lines that an accident "is an unforeseen occurrence with potentially adverse consequences." (That's my wording from memory, which gives the gist if not verbatim.) So, while the everyday connotations of "it was only an accident" may cause some to object to the use of that word to describe a collision, in legal terms it is potentially wider than that.

MikeF
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby MikeF » 12 Nov 2017, 4:59pm

I gave a longer quote in response to pwa's comment. You are not supposed to cross a solid white line just because a vehicle in front is moving "slowly", but only certain vehicles travelling at less than 10mph.
However I've cycled this road at over 25mph and been safely passed by vehicles who have given me plenty of room, and have crossed the white line without issues.

I don't have any problems with the standard give way markings placed appropriately. It's the ones that are put up willy nilly I object to.
Look at this one on NCN21. The "give way" dashed lines are now almost obliterated by a surface repair. And what are cyclists supposed to give way to anyway??
Here's another section of NCN21 with bizarrely placed "give way" markings. The sign that cyclists are rejoining the carriageway should be large enough to be very visible for motorists.
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

thirdcrank
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby thirdcrank » 12 Nov 2017, 5:12pm

MikeF wrote:I gave a longer quote in response to pwa's comment.

I see that now. Thanks.

You are certainly right to make the difference between a vehicle moving slowly and the listed exceptions. The former would allow a driver to overtake anybody driving slowly because of traffic conditions, including a slow-moving queue. It would take away much of the reason for painting the lines.

I'd be one of the last people to defend farcilities: the dangers when it comes to them meeting / crossing / whatever the carriageway are one of the reasons for that. It does seem to me, however, that GIVE WAY is better than CYCLISTS DISMOUNT and I can't see much practical alternative. There is a sign - bike in a red triangle - to warn other road users of the possible presence of cyclists to use in those situations. With rubbish farcilities, that extra sign might achieve little.

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby [XAP]Bob » 13 Nov 2017, 1:31pm

thirdcrank wrote:
MikeF wrote:I gave a longer quote in response to pwa's comment.

I see that now. Thanks.

You are certainly right to make the difference between a vehicle moving slowly and the listed exceptions. The former would allow a driver to overtake anybody driving slowly because of traffic conditions, including a slow-moving queue. It would take away much of the reason for painting the lines.


I consider cars in a traffic jam to be stationary - even if at any given time they might creep forward a small amount. For certain vehicles (motorcycles and pedal cycles) the reasonable course of action is to sail past unhindered.

I'd be one of the last people to defend farcilities: the dangers when it comes to them meeting / crossing / whatever the carriageway are one of the reasons for that. It does seem to me, however, that GIVE WAY is better than CYCLISTS DISMOUNT and I can't see much practical alternative. There is a sign - bike in a red triangle - to warn other road users of the possible presence of cyclists to use in those situations. With rubbish farcilities, that extra sign might achieve little.

One issue is that the 'cyclists rejoin carriageway' sign is only aimed at cyclists, not at motorists.
At any space where it is warranted we should have an offset kerb, with a smooth ramp down into a mandatory cycle lane, which can then be downgraded further (preferably with merge signs from the main carriageway) if cycle provision isn't needed on that stretch of road.

If it weren't for other issues around this area I'd point at this street view image as an example:
SharedUseToRoad.jpg
Shared use facility dropping neatly onto road


The path is dropped onto the road, in a space that is created by using the same space that was allocated to cyclists up until a few yards earlier with a white line dividing the shared space, but dropping it below the kerb. The white line to the outside appears to have got lost somewhere along the line...
It's a very easy way to rejoin the carriageway, it doesn't take extra space, or physically impossible turning by cyclists.
There are other reasons I don't use this section of shared use facility, but plenty of local cyclists do.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way.
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MikeF
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby MikeF » 13 Nov 2017, 11:40pm

[XAP]Bob wrote:
I consider cars in a traffic jam to be stationary - even if at any given time they might creep forward a small amount. For certain vehicles (motorcycles and pedal cycles) the reasonable course of action is to sail past unhindered.

Yes, but the issue is about motor vehicles overtaking cyclists and other slow moving vehicles eg road sweepers, where there is a central solid line in the direction of travel
[XAP]Bob wrote:
One issue is that the 'cyclists rejoin carriageway' sign is only aimed at cyclists, not at motorists.
At any space where it is warranted we should have an offset kerb, with a smooth ramp down into a mandatory cycle lane, which can then be downgraded further (preferably with merge signs from the main carriageway) if cycle provision isn't needed on that stretch of road.

I entirely agree that the sign should be more for the information for motorists rather than cyclists. However it's almost as though it's a sign for cyclists only and is permitted to be a small sign.

[XAP]Bob wrote:If it weren't for other issues around this area I'd point at this street view image as an example

The path is dropped onto the road, in a space that is created by using the same space that was allocated to cyclists up until a few yards earlier with a white line dividing the shared space, but dropping it below the kerb. The white line to the outside appears to have got lost somewhere along the line...
It's a very easy way to rejoin the carriageway, it doesn't take extra space, or physically impossible turning by cyclists.
There are other reasons I don't use this section of shared use facility, but plenty of local cyclists do.
That's along the "lines" that should be implemented. And not like this against the flow of traffic. (Such is West Sussex CC's competence )
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

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Tigerbiten
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby Tigerbiten » 14 Nov 2017, 12:31am

[XAP]Bob wrote:The path is dropped onto the road, in a space that is created by using the same space that was allocated to cyclists up until a few yards earlier with a white line dividing the shared space, but dropping it below the kerb. The white line to the outside appears to have got lost somewhere along the line...
It's a very easy way to rejoin the carriageway, it doesn't take extra space, or physically impossible turning by cyclists.

They've put end to a new shared path on near me on Sywell Road like that.
BUT .........
You rejoin the carriageway on a triangle of tarmac that forces you straight into any traffic on the road.
It looks like they've come to the end of where the road was widened for a new industrial estate and just ended the path as quick as possible.

pwa
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby pwa » 14 Nov 2017, 5:12am

I note that the list of exceptions to the general rule of not crossing a continuous white line include passing a pedal cycle not doing more than 10mph. Providing it is safe and necessary to do so. What is meant by "necessary" in this context is open to interpretation, but the only meaning that makes sense to me is "necessary to avoid an unacceptably long wait". Otherwise, what else could it mean? No pass is absolutely necessary.

thirdcrank
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby thirdcrank » 14 Nov 2017, 9:07am

pwa wrote:I note that the list of exceptions to the general rule of not crossing a continuous white line include passing a pedal cycle not doing more than 10mph. Providing it is safe and necessary to do so. What is meant by "necessary" in this context is open to interpretation, but the only meaning that makes sense to me is "necessary to avoid an unacceptably long wait". Otherwise, what else could it mean? No pass is absolutely necessary.


I suspect that the "safe and necessary to do so" applies to straddling/ crossing the solid white line to overtake a cyclist, rather than to the act of overtaking the cyclist. Of course, that implies that if it's not safe and necessary to cross the line, then any overtaking should be within the lane. At that point, the rider's theoretical protection comes from things like the prohibition on careless / inconsiderate / dangerous driving. One of the underlying problems then is that all the regulations which have been introduced over the years have been because the dangerous/ careless driving offences were so difficult to prove unless there was an accident.

In reality, in the absence of a fatal or life-threatening collision I suspect anything goes. :(

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meic
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby meic » 14 Nov 2017, 10:00am

Which is why when cycling within double white lines I often make it necessary for motorists to cross them while overtaking me. Otherwise they will try and squeeze between me and them, even if there is no room to do so.
As TC alluded to there is a much greater chance of them being prosecuted for crossing the double white lines than for caressing my elbow with their mirror.
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Pete Owens
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby Pete Owens » 15 Nov 2017, 12:01am

meic wrote:Which is why when cycling within double white lines I often make it necessary for motorists to cross them while overtaking me. Otherwise they will try and squeeze between me and them, even if there is no room to do so.

Which of course brings us back to the cyclists observed by the OP.

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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby Tizme » 22 Dec 2017, 5:32pm

Resurrecting a slightly old discussion, as the subject of passing cyclists came up in a chat with someone whilst walking our dogs. The other person was commenting on how fast and close drivers will pass walkers on a road without a pavement (quite a bit in and around our village). The other person then commented on how difficult she found it to pass cyclists two or three abreast and that they should single file, "to allow the driver to pass". I pointed out that in a lot of cases, especially on country roads, a group of cyclists were easier to pass as they were a more compact group, in single file they were too long to overtake safely, which she conceded was possibly true.

This person then went on to relate how they had been "stuck" behind a large group of cyclists who would not move out of the way for "several miles" to allow her to pass and she could only drive at around 15mph. She said that when she eventually managed to overtake, to show her displeasure, she sounded her horn whilst going passed. She then stated when they caught up with her at traffic lights they all slapped her roof as they overtook. She could not understand their action :roll:

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TrevA
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby TrevA » 22 Dec 2017, 6:05pm

Having given the situation in the OP some thought. What I would do is get into a single file, but ride out in the carraigeway, where the outside rider of a 2 abreast group would ride. Thus you are complying with the Highway Code, by singling out, but drivers still can't overtake. I think it is the 2 abreast that winds drivers up. If you are single file but they still can't overtake, they they will be more inclined to wait patiently behind. This is for a small group where it is feasible to single out.

I had a similar situation to the dog walking post above. I was with my wife, who was riding her horse but there is a section of road from the stables to the bridle way. I walked along slightly ahead of the horse, with a lead rope, but to the outside of him. Thus preventing any cars from closely overtaking and frightening the horse.

kwackers
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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby kwackers » 22 Dec 2017, 8:47pm

TrevA wrote:If you are single file but they still can't overtake, they they will be more inclined to wait patiently behind.

LOL!

No, they won't wait patiently behind. They won't even wait patiently behind if you're in the middle of the road tailing another vehicle so they don't have anywhere to go.

When motorists get annoyed at 2 abreast its because they haven't figured out how to overtake a single rider. Their assumption is if you were single file you'd be in the gutter and they could tootle past squeezing between you and the oncoming vehicles.

"Ah" you say "but you could ride in primary - or even further out".
Yes you could. But only if you enjoy fast, close punishment passes and sometimes with a bit of horn too to put the bejesus up you.

If they overtook single cyclists properly it wouldn't occur to them that 2 cyclists were harder to overtake because in both cases they'd know they need to move out into the other lane.
Most motorists need to practise overtaking a single cyclist before moving on to overtaking a pair.

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Re: 2 abreast riding

Postby Pete Owens » 22 Dec 2017, 9:18pm

TrevA wrote:Having given the situation in the OP some thought. What I would do is get into a single file, but ride out in the carraigeway, where the outside rider of a 2 abreast group would ride. Thus you are complying with the Highway Code, by singling out, but drivers still can't overtake.


If you do that you are being deliberately obstructive.
There may be circumstances where there is a sufficient gap in the oncoming lane to overtake two cyclists riding side by side, but not enough to get past the longer group riding in line.