How to you take roadworks?

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robing
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How to you take roadworks?

Postby robing » 27 Jul 2018, 3:41pm

The sort with traffic controls. These can be problematic for a bike, because the lane that is open is narrow so vehicles cannot pass you safely.
Also they can be quite long meaning you could run out of time and the lights change before you make it to the other end!

What I do is when the lights change, if there's no one behind me I go like the clappers to get through as quickly as possible. Will go right out in to primary to discourage anyone trying to overtake and check behind me frequently. If there are two or three vehicles behind me I generally wave them past me and then follow them as fast as I can. The problem is if there are a lot of vehicles and you let them pass, you could run out of time yourself.

Phil Fouracre
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Phil Fouracre » 27 Jul 2018, 4:19pm

Not a problem, primary all the way! :-)
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

whoof
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby whoof » 27 Jul 2018, 4:34pm

Phil Fouracre wrote:Not a problem, primary all the way! :-)

+1
As you have said if it's narrow vehicles can't pass safely and if you do wait and the other end goes green whilst you are still going between the lights then the driver coming in the opposite direction 'knows' that you must have gone though a red light and it is their civic duty to educate you by driving straight at you.

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Mick F
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Mick F » 27 Jul 2018, 4:42pm

Sometimes, they get grumpy and accuse you of coming through on red.
If I can, I'll go inside the cones to allow the motor vehicles to get through.

Once, on my way to Tavistock, they had roadworks circa 100yds up the hill.
I was stopped with the traffic waiting and I was just behind the second car with four or five behind me.
The road was wider at the start than at the finish and the roadsides high steep banks.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@50.53921 ... 312!8i6656

Green light, and off we go - uphill! - and the cars behind me pass easily, but by the time I was half way through in the narrow bit, the traffic starts coming towards me. First vehicle was a big lorry.
The roadworks had barriers and not cones, so I had nowhere to go.
I stopped.
The lorry stopped.
The driver and me looked at each other.

The road workers saw the problem, but couldn't really help as they were big chunky water-filled barriers.
I got tight against the LH bank and the lorry squeezed past.
All the traffic behind came past too, and one driver gave me a mouthful accusing me of being like all cyclists in not obeying traffic lights.

I put him right of course, but he didn't believe me.
I didn't quote the highway code at him, but if it came to a proper argument, I would have done.
Green means you MAY go if the road is CLEAR.
Rule 176 refers.

The lorry driver was at fault. The rest followed like sheep.
Mick F. Cornwall

robing
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby robing » 27 Jul 2018, 5:30pm

I also will dip in to the cones if necessary. I haven't had one as bad as that Mick F but I went through a couple that were particularly long.

Phil Fouracre
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Phil Fouracre » 27 Jul 2018, 5:56pm

Never an easy situation to be in, but, my argument in favour of primary every time, would be that you would more than likely end up with cars behind you. In this situation you would effectively be backed up by this traffic, and you then [inappropriate phrase removed] push you out of the way.
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

mattsccm
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby mattsccm » 27 Jul 2018, 6:01pm

Same for me. Happened once where the delay was too short and oncoming traffic met me and my tail of cars. A bend in the road meant that it wasn't possible to see if the lights had changed or if the road was clear. Stalemate except for me as I could just squeeze through and disappear leaving 2 queues of cars facing each other and getting longer! I cleared off sharpish. :D

flat tyre
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby flat tyre » 27 Jul 2018, 6:54pm

Yes you are right they can be a real pain on a bike. A few years ago I was cycling with Mrs FT through some roadworks which were about 1/4 mile long up a slight hill with no room for the traffic behind to get past, so we just kept going with traffic crawling up behind us. As Mrs FT is not the world's fastest cyclist we found we were confronted by a line of cars appearing from the opposite direction as the lights had changed before we got through. We squeezed through and left the chaos behind us.

If on my own I usually try to get as near the front of the queue as I can then cycle in primary all the way through. Sometimes if it looks safe and I can see an escape route through the cones if things go pear shaped I will set off before the lights go green so I avoid holding up the traffic.

Phil Fouracre
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Phil Fouracre » 27 Jul 2018, 7:33pm

This is really a perfect example of using traffic to protect yourself. All the time I'm cycling I try to anticipate how the traffic flow is going to pan out, and use it to assist and protect me. It's surprising how much you can use traffic snarl ups to make progress! :-)
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

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foxyrider
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby foxyrider » 27 Jul 2018, 7:54pm

If there is insufficient delay it's the fault of the supposedly trained TL operator. As I understand it they should set the delay to allow the slowest road user to safely negotiate the obstacle. I've not recently had any 'short' sequences, maybe not exactly generous, but doable.

I will always try to get as far up the queue as I can and take primary to go through. If it's safe to do so I may go inside cones allowing other traffic to pass but I have been caught out at the end before now in being unable to rejoin the carriageway due to excessive cone-age!
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brynpoeth
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby brynpoeth » 27 Jul 2018, 7:59pm

Phil Fouracre wrote:This is really a perfect example of using traffic to protect yourself. All the time I'm cycling I try to anticipate how the traffic flow is going to pan out, and use it to assist and protect me. It's surprising how much you can use traffic snarl ups to make progress! :-)

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Cunobelin
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Cunobelin » 27 Jul 2018, 10:23pm

Slightly OT.
This is Haslar Bridge, which used to be on my commute:

Image

There was a major problem as with the hill, bikes could not get across within the time allocated, and if you had cycles still crossing it was tight (you can see how the oncoming vehicle has to encroach into the cycle lane)..... so Primary was the best option.

One day I had a prat in a BMW tooting and shouting because I was "blocking" him. So I assumed that he was obeying the Highway Code and alerting me of a problem, stopped and checked my panniers were in place and there was no problem with the trike. Shrugged my shoulders and remounted.

Unfortunately at this point the lights had changed and when we mounted the crest, I was able to squeeze past the stationary oncoming vehicles, and the BMW was face to face with a bus and half a dozen cars.

He had to reverse all the way back to the start of the bridge.

I felt really guilty

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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby Vorpal » 27 Jul 2018, 11:27pm

It depends on how long the single lane is, how well I know the area, and if I think the lights have been timed for cyclists.

If I don't know anything different, I go through in primary, and try to 'trap' at least one car behind me.

I went through some last week, and I could see the other side, and there were only a few motor vehicles, so I let them go through and followed.

Some years ago, I complained to Essex CC about the timing on temporary traffic lights (there wasn't time for a cyclists to get through), and they fixed it within a few days.
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boliston
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby boliston » 28 Jul 2018, 9:08pm

always best to make sure you take primary so there is some traffic behind you as this will usually make oncoming traffic wait even if it means they miss their own green cycle

pwa
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Re: How to you take roadworks?

Postby pwa » 28 Jul 2018, 9:14pm

robing wrote:The sort with traffic controls. These can be problematic for a bike, because the lane that is open is narrow so vehicles cannot pass you safely.
Also they can be quite long meaning you could run out of time and the lights change before you make it to the other end!

What I do is when the lights change, if there's no one behind me I go like the clappers to get through as quickly as possible. Will go right out in to primary to discourage anyone trying to overtake and check behind me frequently. If there are two or three vehicles behind me I generally wave them past me and then follow them as fast as I can. The problem is if there are a lot of vehicles and you let them pass, you could run out of time yourself.

I usually just take as much road as I need to be safe, which generally means the whole lane. As an alternative I sometimes get off and walk on the pavement. I never wave vehicles past and risk being caught on red again.