Yet Another Cycling Forum

General Category => On The Road => Topic started by: Sparky on February 02, 2012, 12:07:22 am

Title: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Sparky on February 02, 2012, 12:07:22 am
The Times is running a very special front page tomorrow, sneak peek here: http://twitpic.com/8ehuh2


They're launching a cycle safety campaign called Cities Fit for Cycling, with this manifesto:
   
* Trucks entering a city centre should be required by law to fit censors, audible truck-turning alarms, extra mirrors and safety bars to stop cyclists being thrown under the wheels.
   
* The 500 most dangerous road junctions must be identified, redesigned or fitted with priority traffic lights for cyclists and Trixi mirrors that allow lorry drivers to see cyclists on their near-side.
   
* A national audit of cycling to find out how many people cycle in Britain and how cyclists are killed or injured should be held to underpin effective cycle safety.
   
* Two per cent of the Highways Agency budget should be earmarked for next generation cycle routes, providing £100 million a year towards world-class cycling infrastructure. Each year cities should be graded on the quality of cycling provision.
   
* The training of cyclists and drivers must improve and cycle safety should become a core part of the driving test.
   
* 20mph should become the default speed limit in residential areas where there are no cycle lanes.
   
* Businesses should be invited to sponsor cycleways and cycling super-highways, mirroring the Barclays-backed bicycle hire scheme in London.
   
* Every city, even those without an elected mayor, should appoint a cycling commissioner to push home reforms.


You can sign up and support it here:

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/contact/
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Pedaldog on February 02, 2012, 12:55:16 am
Thanks for the link. Been there, done the pledge and writed an paragraff!
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 02, 2012, 06:10:40 am
In the video with Gaz, 1:04 is my clip, nearly over the bonnet.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: jane on February 02, 2012, 06:43:52 am
Cynthia Barlow. She's a real hero for me.  Immensely brave and resourceful woman. 
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: CamPhil on February 02, 2012, 06:44:33 am
I've signed, and made the suggestion in the comment that presumed liability should be on the list.  I doubt if they'd be pushing for it on just one suggestion - but if they keep getting that same suggestion (along with the point that it works well in the Netherlands and Germany) they might just take it on board.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: asterix on February 02, 2012, 08:01:36 am
Thanks for the link. Been there, done the pledge and writed an paragraff!

+1
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: David Martin on February 02, 2012, 09:33:18 am
   
* Trucks entering a city centre should be required by law to fit censors,

A freudian slip? Is that to stop the drivers talking nonsense?

Or is it to put a black pen through the speech bubble of the cyclist who is swearing at the driver after being nearly squished?

At least if we are going to have accidents, lets have polite British ones please.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: David Martin on February 02, 2012, 09:35:55 am
And +1 to the campaign, but remember "Cycling isn't dangerous. Driving huge trucks with limited visibility in crowded areas is dangerous"
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 02, 2012, 09:43:31 am
+1 signed.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on February 02, 2012, 09:59:42 am
   
* Trucks entering a city centre should be required by law to fit censors,

A freudian slip? Is that to stop the drivers talking nonsense?

Or is it to put a black pen through the speech bubble of the cyclist who is swearing at the driver after being nearly squished?

At least if we are going to have accidents, lets have polite British ones please.

That's obviously a mistake.  It should be censers, so you can smell them coming.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: why1040 on February 02, 2012, 10:10:29 am
Thanks for the link. Been there, done the pledge and writed an paragraff!

+1
+2
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wowbagger on February 02, 2012, 10:16:11 am
Well, I never thought I'd sign up to something involving the Murdoch press. I feel as though I need a wash.

My paragraph highlighted the need for enforcement of existing law, particularly relating to speed limits, close overtaking and mobile phone use amongst drivers and suggested that the Times should launch a national advertising campaign aimed at educating drivers, but stopped short of suggesting that James Murdoch should get his mate Jeremy Clarkson to front it.

I also asked for a presumption of liability of motorists involved in collisions with cyclists & pedestrians.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: davelodwig on February 02, 2012, 10:22:23 am
Just added my pledge,

Seems to be allot of people on Facebook this morning linking to the page, normally followed by comments from their motoring friends about how a cyclist appeared out of nowhere and hit their car and how dangerous that is.

If the cyclist whose managed transubstantiation would like to come forward I'd find that really useful for getting to work on time.

Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 02, 2012, 10:52:16 am
Although I don't agree with all the details, it's great that a newspaper like The Times is doing this.

But what are "audible truck-turning alarms"?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: why1040 on February 02, 2012, 11:01:55 am
Although I don't agree with all the details, it's great that a newspaper like The Times is doing this.

But what are "audible truck-turning alarms"?

Presumably similar to the "this vehicle is reversing, bleep bleep bleep" types?  "This vehicle is turning left, bleep bleep bleep"?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on February 02, 2012, 11:06:49 am
Heard one of those yesterday.  The truck was in the right hand lane and the alarm came on with the indicators*.  I held back as we went along the street.  The truck neither turned left nor moved into the left hand lane.  I could have been through and away from the danger if I'd ignored it.  Equally, I could have been crushed.

* Which means that all those manoeuvres you see where the driver doesn't indicate?  Uh-huh, most of them, right?  They'll not have a warning.  The drivers who use their indicators are not principally the ones I'm bothered about. :facepalm:
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 02, 2012, 11:28:37 am
Although I don't agree with all the details, it's great that a newspaper like The Times is doing this.

But what are "audible truck-turning alarms"?

Presumably similar to the "this vehicle is reversing, bleep bleep bleep" types?  "This vehicle is turning left, bleep bleep bleep"?
That's what I assumed. But I wasn't sure, partly because I've never heard one and partly because...
Heard one of those yesterday.  The truck was in the right hand lane and the alarm came on with the indicators*.  I held back as we went along the street.  The truck neither turned left nor moved into the left hand lane.  I could have been through and away from the danger if I'd ignored it.  Equally, I could have been crushed.

* Which means that all those manoeuvres you see where the driver doesn't indicate?  Uh-huh, most of them, right?  They'll not have a warning.  The drivers who use their indicators are not principally the ones I'm bothered about. :facepalm:
I can't see the point in them. Except, I suppose, as an arse-cover for the truck driver and operator.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: why1040 on February 02, 2012, 11:36:10 am
Of course they're an arse-cover...as are the reversing ones! 

The one upside to the reversing one is that it ONLY comes on when you're actually likely to be going backwards...lol
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 02, 2012, 11:50:00 am
The reversing ones do, I think, offer some benefit to other people because the lorry is reversing and it is a useful warning. As are reversing lights... but I suppose in goods yards etc people might well be behind the lorry and looking away from it. A turning alarm might have a "step away from the vehicle" effect in those situations, but I can't see what it's going to do on the road - other than add extra noise.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 02, 2012, 02:36:48 pm

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3306502.ece

Kaya Burgess on his friend and colleague, whose journey to work ended in critical injury

The reality with any major issue is that it only truly touches you when it comes close to home. However regularly you may cycle on Britain’s city streets and however aware you are of the risks of doing so, it is not until you have seen one of your closest friends and colleagues stretchered off the tarmac from beneath the wheels of a lorry only yards from the office that the vulnerability of cyclists hits home.

...

(also posted in Tim's thread - wot the hell ... )
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: SlowCoach on February 02, 2012, 02:43:37 pm
I seem to remember that the Independent launched a similar campaign late last year. There was lots of coverage for about 2 days and then it disappeared from view.

Perhaps the Times and the Independent might like to combine forces - or is that a step too far?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Hot Flatus on February 02, 2012, 02:56:01 pm
In the video with Gaz, 1:04 is my clip, nearly over the bonnet.

Gaz (whoever he is, I don't know of him) comes across very well, measured, calm, reasonable and human. This is exactly what is needed rather than the shrill ranting that often accompanies this sort of thing.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Pickled Onion on February 02, 2012, 03:16:10 pm
The reversing ones do, I think, offer some benefit to other people because the lorry is reversing and it is a useful warning. As are reversing lights... but I suppose in goods yards etc people might well be behind the lorry and looking away from it. A turning alarm might have a "step away from the vehicle" effect in those situations, but I can't see what it's going to do on the road - other than add extra noise.

You should never, ever reverse a large vehicle without a banksman where "people might well be behind the lorry".
If you did so in a goods yard/building site, H&S would be down on you like a ton of bricks.
Do the same on the public highway and H&S couldn't care less.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 02, 2012, 03:51:10 pm
In the video with Gaz, 1:04 is my clip, nearly over the bonnet.

Gaz (whoever he is, I don't know of him) comes across very well, measured, calm, reasonable and human. This is exactly what is needed rather than the shrill ranting that often accompanies this sort of thing.

He's great, isn't he? Nice bloke in person too. Has the CycleGaz youtube channel (previously Gaz545), and Silly Cyclists too.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: benborp on February 02, 2012, 04:37:03 pm
You should never, ever reverse a large vehicle without a banksman where "people might well be behind the lorry".
If you did so in a goods yard/building site, H&S would be down on you like a ton of bricks.
Do the same on the public highway and H&S couldn't care less.

The HSE's influence is very apparent in the theatre industry. Day to day rigging and lifting practices must conform to a whole raft of legislation and regulation. Introduce performers into the mix and safety factors, specific training routines and procedures jump to a whole new level. Introduce a member of the public (or several hundred) to the area of lifting or rigging and there is absolutely no doubt about the operators' requirement to ensure the safety of everyone involved. It is, rightly so, terrifying.
Theatres can be dangerous places. So can construction sites. Far more members of the public are killed or seriously injured each year as a consequence of the construction industry than by theatre; despite the fact that millions more people attend theatre events than set foot on construction sites.
This is a huge hole in the HSE's purpose of protecting people from work related injury.

Another thing that has struck me is that I spend a fair amount of my time trussed up in my own PPE with rescue equipment to hand, ready to intervene should anything go wrong with the sequences as they are performed. I'll be part of a team of half a dozen people specifically trained for each sequence. Once we stabilise any situation we would hand over to a team of 30 more that are well rehearsed (i.e. each day) in looking after the welfare of 500 people. Much of the rescue equipment is expensive and is good for one use only. In light of this, the arguments surrounding the expense and logistical difficulties of fitting extra safety equipment to lorries strike me as even more ludicrous. Or do I have an unrealistic view of the commercial world because I work in a sector that isn't expected to make a profit?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: jane on February 02, 2012, 05:12:36 pm

I can't see the point in them. Except, I suppose, as an arse-cover for the truck driver and operator.

I wrote this in 2009 on a YACF thread about the killing of Eilidh Cairns and the memorial ride, explaining why I think all LGV's should be fitted with these safety sensors.
I'm going to apologise in advance for the length of these post.

I will attend this ride.  I have been becoming more and more upset at these cyclist deaths and I get the feeling we're all becoming a little complacent, almost like there's an acceptable level of fatalities,  as long as
 it's not us or someone dear to us, the way most of society deals with the annual loss of life on the roads generally (about 3,00 a year isn't it).  Well, it isn't acceptable, especially when there are things that can be done to minimise the risk these big vehicles pose to us on the streets, regardless of what mistakes we might make on the road. 

I was tired today when I left work.  An early start at 7, preparing for a big whole school special assembly I
was delivering, followed by a day of teaching a class of lively ten year olds towards the end of a long busy half term and then delivering a training course leaves you pretty whacked.  I should probably have got the bus home. Or had a strong coffee.  But I didn't.  Sometimes, even the most experienced of us make mistakes when we're tired.
I must have switched off for a moment on the way home.  Prior to riding along a fairly quiet road which leads to Brockley Cross Roundabout I was as alert as usual heading along Old Kent Rd, up New Cross Rd,
getting in the right position to turn right onto the one way system.  Then once past the traffic lights, the road gets a bit quiet.  My tired brain must have thought Phew!Relax. Switch to automatic pilot. The next thing I remember is some robotic female voice saying over and over again something like "This vehicle is turning left."  I was suddenly fully alert again, hands on the brakes just in time to stop myself heading up the inside of a large cement lorry turning left on to the roundabout. I would have been squished.  I consider myself a careful, competent, experienced rider.  But today I made a mistake.  If the company that owned that vehicle had not taken some responsibility for the danger their vehicles can pose, I may not be writing this now and some of you would be shaking your heads, tut tutting about yet another woman cyclist going up the inside of a large vehicle.  What did she expect?  What we should all expect and be shouting for is for all lorries to have every kind of safety device available that minimises the threat they pose to any cyclist.  The fact that this one did today may have saved my life.

We don't always say it.  Calm down, dear.

No don't.  Stay angry.   And do something about it.


Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: sas on February 02, 2012, 11:03:23 pm
I'd like vehicles to be fitted with mind readers that bark out

"Warning. This vehicle is about to overtake you before turning left/pulling in too early".
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: David Martin on February 02, 2012, 11:31:22 pm
It is quite right to highlight areas where improvements can be made, such as the warning sounds (but will that lead to drivers relying on them rather than looking - pity the deaf cyclists), trixi mirrors and so on. These can and will make a small difference.

But we are in danger of getting an 'OMG cycling is soooo dangerous response'. Lets put this into perspective.

Every year in the UK more people win the lottery main jackpot than are killed cycling. More in the second prize than are seriouly injured. In fact, there are about the same number of cyclists having an injury requiring A&E attention  as those winning over 1000 GBP on the lottery.

Boris bikes: Millions of central london trips. Almost no serious injuries. The rate is below 1 KSI in a million trips, well into the HSE 'so safe we are not bothered' area.

Cycling on the whole is a safe and beneficial activity. It is possible to be even safer.

Don't ride drunk. The proportion of intoxicated cyclists at A&E is an order of magnitude higher than their representation on the roads.
Don't ride alongside other vehicles. Especially not big ones. In front or behind is the place to be.
Don't race. Officially or unofficially. Compeing for the same bit of the road as a load of other people or pushing your skills to the limit will increase your risk dramatically.
Follow the rules of the road. Be assertive not aggressive.

Yes we should support Cyclesafe but we should also be putting forward the message that cycling is really quite safe when put into context, is good for you (and everyone else), and could be far more pleasant for everyone witha bit of an attitude change.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 02, 2012, 11:38:23 pm
You should never, ever reverse a large vehicle without a banksman where "people might well be behind the lorry".
If you did so in a goods yard/building site, H&S would be down on you like a ton of bricks.
Do the same on the public highway and H&S couldn't care less.

The HSE's influence is very apparent in the theatre industry. Day to day rigging and lifting practices must conform to a whole raft of legislation and regulation. Introduce performers into the mix and safety factors, specific training routines and procedures jump to a whole new level. Introduce a member of the public (or several hundred) to the area of lifting or rigging and there is absolutely no doubt about the operators' requirement to ensure the safety of everyone involved. It is, rightly so, terrifying.
Theatres can be dangerous places. So can construction sites. Far more members of the public are killed or seriously injured each year as a consequence of the construction industry than by theatre; despite the fact that millions more people attend theatre events than set foot on construction sites.
This is a huge hole in the HSE's purpose of protecting people from work related injury.

Another thing that has struck me is that I spend a fair amount of my time trussed up in my own PPE with rescue equipment to hand, ready to intervene should anything go wrong with the sequences as they are performed. I'll be part of a team of half a dozen people specifically trained for each sequence. Once we stabilise any situation we would hand over to a team of 30 more that are well rehearsed (i.e. each day) in looking after the welfare of 500 people. Much of the rescue equipment is expensive and is good for one use only. In light of this, the arguments surrounding the expense and logistical difficulties of fitting extra safety equipment to lorries strike me as even more ludicrous. Or do I have an unrealistic view of the commercial world because I work in a sector that isn't expected to make a profit?

Thanks for that. If only we could get the HSE to deal with road crashes as they do with industrial incidents.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: sas on February 03, 2012, 12:05:55 am
Cycling on the whole is a safe and beneficial activity. It is possible to be even safer.
....
Yes we should support Cyclesafe but we should also be putting forward the message that cycling is really quite safe when put into context, is good for you (and everyone else), and could be far more pleasant for everyone witha bit of an attitude change.

I know cycling is relatively safe. I'll happily tell people that it's more or less as safe as walking the same distance, and argue over whether the benefits of various piece of cyclist's safety equipment is worthwhile or not. However most of this safety comes from being alert to the traffic around you, concentrating on your cycling, and knowing not to do things such as going up the inside of a truck, and I think this is what puts many people off cycling.

Someone on the Southwards Cyclists mailing list (which I find quite insightful as to people's views) has previously said she doesn't want to have to worry about cars/trucks/road positioning/always looking over her shoulder etc, she just wants to cycle. I don't see that as a completely realistic view, though I find it attractive. I'm riding a bike which has very little chance of injuring anyone, yet I've got to pay full and constant attention to the road, ride defensively, and to predict what others are going to do, whereas someone who's driving a far more dangerous vehicle can get away with driving half-asleep.


Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: jane on February 03, 2012, 06:14:38 am


But we are in danger of getting an 'OMG cycling is soooo dangerous response'. Lets put this into perspective.

Every year in the UK more people win the lottery main jackpot than are killed cycling. More in the second prize than are seriouly injured. In fact, there are about the same number of cyclists having an injury requiring attention  as those winning over 1000 GBP on the lottery.


Boris bikes: Millions of central london trips. Almost no serious injuries. The rate is below 1 KSI in a million
trips, well into the HSE 'so safe we are not bothered' area.

Cycling on the whole is a safe and beneficial activity.

Yes, on the whole it is.  I've been cycling for over 40 years all over the country and elsewhere and have been actively encouraging many others to do so.  But I, and many other London cyclists are angry at the

moment for good reason.  We are not over reacting.  There is a particular problem here which those who
have the power to sort are refusing to do adequately, as far as we are concerned.  And talking about the lack of casualties on Boris bikes is really missing the point. Most of us who live in London and ride our bikes to work, to the shops, to school every day, do not use these. And Boris bikers, I would argue, are not your average London cyclist.
  We have a Londonwide transport administration which, quite openly, prioritises the needs of motor traffic over the needs of other road users.  This isn't really just an issue for cyclists.  Transport for London's attitude is born out of the widespread assumption in our modern culture that roads are primarily for cars
and that cars are so necessary a part of our  that a certain level of road casualty is acceptable.  In fact, it's probably pedestrians that suffer the most in this situation.  The latest BikesAlive protest at Kings X is
alongside Roadpeace.
    If those of you who think we are saying cycling is dangerous, you are not listening properly.  Cycling is safe, enjoyable, the only sensible way for fit, healthy people to get around a city like London.  Unfortunately, some of the roads and junctions that we have to use are not. And some of the vehicles we
have to deal with could be made safer. That is where change needs to come.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on February 03, 2012, 09:04:40 am
I am a bit worried that the campaign refers to Cities. Its already seems to be turning into a London thing.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on February 03, 2012, 09:13:38 am
Are there cities outside London? ;)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 03, 2012, 09:17:10 am
The Independent started a Save Our Cyclists campaign last year (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/save-our-cyclists-clamour-for-flood-of-avoidable-road-deaths-to-be-stemmed-2268135.html). Here's their latest article on the issue of cycling fatalities:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/the-ghost-bike-revolt-families-demand-action-on-cyclist-deaths-6348784.html
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 03, 2012, 09:50:46 am
But what are "audible truck-turning alarms"?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wv4Ojvq3Foc
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 03, 2012, 12:36:53 pm
Wendy's video and Jane's post about her experience with audible turning alarms both give cause to think, Jane's showing their use and Wendy's their abuse. If drivers all used mirror-signal-observe correctly, they would be neither necessary nor a problem, but because drivers often don't, they are likely to be both IMO.

Thanks for that. If only we could get the HSE to deal with road crashes as they do with industrial incidents.
Presumably the reason HSE are interested in theatres, building sites, etc but not roads, is that roads are not workplaces. Some vehicles may be workplaces and there are people who work on roads and streets, but that is not their primary purpose in the way it is for theatres etc.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 03, 2012, 01:03:04 pm
You'll probably find that a similar proportion of people in a theatre are workers to that proportion of workers on the roads.

If you see what I mean.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 03, 2012, 01:05:34 pm
Abuse? What are you talking about?  ???
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 03, 2012, 01:17:41 pm
By "abuse" I mean misuse. The lorry in your vid is sitting there with its indicator going, but it's not moving. It's not actually turning left. So its signal is misleading, as it's next to a side road on the left, and the alarm makes it audibly annoying. I note it's also parked (just about) on the zig-zags of a zebra crossing.  :hand:
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 03, 2012, 01:18:29 pm
You'll probably find that a similar proportion of people in a theatre are workers to that proportion of workers on the roads.

If you see what I mean.
Depends whether it's a performance or a rehearsal.  :)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 03, 2012, 01:20:31 pm
By "abuse" I mean misuse. The lorry in your vid is sitting there with its indicator going, but it's not moving. It's not actually turning left. So its signal is misleading, as it's next to a side road on the left, and the alarm makes it audibly annoying. I note it's also parked (just about) on the zig-zags of a zebra crossing.  :hand:

Well, perhaps his parking isn't perfect, but honestly, try to pick something more serious to wring your hands over. He was just waiting whilst another lorry cleared the construction site gates.

The warning is connected to his left indicators, so not abuse at all. Quite appropriate to have the left indicator on there.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 03, 2012, 01:28:09 pm
His parking is not the point. I realise the alarm is connected to the indicator, but why is it appropriate to have the indicator on when he's parked? If he's just about to turn left, it's not obvious in the video - it's stationary - and looks like a side road not a construction site.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 03, 2012, 01:46:40 pm
I don't understand your viewpoint, and really there's no need to fret so unnecessarily. You're digressing off topic into something so incredibly minor it's not even worth discussing on the internet.

You asked what an audible turning left signal was, now you've been able to see one. End of story.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 03, 2012, 02:03:14 pm
The Independent started a Save Our Cyclists campaign last year (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/save-our-cyclists-clamour-for-flood-of-avoidable-road-deaths-to-be-stemmed-2268135.html). Here's their latest article on the issue of cycling fatalities:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/the-ghost-bike-revolt-families-demand-action-on-cyclist-deaths-6348784.html
That might actually be a better article than the Times one. I like their advice section, their top tips are [bit long]:
(click to show/hide)


That article opens with a depressing stat:
The number of cyclists killed and seriously injured on Britain's roads has risen by 8 per cent compared to last year despite improvements in injury rates for all other road users.


IIRC it looks a lot better if you include the increase in miles-ridden-per-year. Has this been discussed already  ???
EDIT: It's sort of covered here http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=56171.0 . Sort of.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 03, 2012, 02:08:20 pm
Sadly the the comments section is the usual war zone.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 03, 2012, 02:14:41 pm
[Automated reply:]
Well why read them then?  O:-)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: spindrift on February 03, 2012, 02:14:49 pm
See that knob-end Penning again from Matc's link:

Quote
Roads Minister, Mike Penning, faced criticism over comments he made to the House of Commons Transport Committee, suggesting that cyclists running red lights were responsible for deaths and injuries. He said last week: "It would help save a lot of cyclists' lives and stop a lot of serious injuries if so many of you didn't go through a red light... Now that's not saying that we should make them all criminals and all pariahs and there are motorcycles that go through but it is so bloody dangerous."

The bloke's a gobshite, he keeps coming out with stuff that just isn't true in order to slag off cyclists, it's embarrassing.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 03, 2012, 02:20:26 pm
[Automated reply:]
Well why read them then?  O:-)

Because I find it interesting to see what drivers can type by the simple expedient of pounding the keyboard with their foreheads.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: benborp on February 03, 2012, 02:40:45 pm
To labour a point about theatre (and many other industries) and the road, the theatre's duty of care to the public frequently extends beyond the boundaries of the building. When we operate in a public space we are just as stringently required to protect the public as if we were operating in our own premises.
We frequently have to load and unload trucks across a busy footway.
Many theatres are in such congested and labyrinthine locations that it takes over a dozen people to safely manoeuvre an artic in to its bay. We are expected to anticipate and mitigate against the stupidity of the public.
A serious incident here could have the same repercussions with the HSE as if it occurred in our space. However the consequences of a terrible 'accident' occurring once the truck is five minutes down the road after leaving the theatre are far less severe for the vehicles operators.


As to the roadway as a workplace, the road outside the theatre I'll be working in next week, during the working day and well into the evening carries predominantly (90+%) 'working' motorized vehicles. Taxis, private hires, delivery and couriers, artics and emergency vehicles (many central London streets will be similar, apart from the emergency vehicles - they're there because of the kebab shop). Vehicles whose drivers will spend almost their entire working day on the road.
When there are redevelopment plans and planned engineering closures great emphasis is placed on the local roads' economic worth and the impact on local business. Boris Johnson's arguments on congestion charging, traffic flow and prioritization often refer to (and favour) the impact that they will have on the business users of London's roads.
Roads are recognized in many ways as a workplace - just not by the HSE. Heavy machinery is least regulated where it comes in to most frequent contact with the public and also where it happens to cause the most damage.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 03, 2012, 08:03:15 pm
Roads have been my workplace too, many years ago when I was a motorcycle courier (there's an industry which needs regulating if ever there was one) but that is not their primary function. Moreover, legislation already exists for those working on roads and streets, from Food Hygiene for the kebab van to the various Road Traffic regulations that we're concerned with here. It's that legislation that needs enforcing, not other rules that need extending. We should be looking at Traffic Police and CPS not HSE.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 03, 2012, 08:14:14 pm
I agree that the police/CPS could be doing what we want - but they're not. Maybe we should look at other options, improve our odds? If HSE stopped all the KSIs caused by vehicles that are (effectively) a workplace, that would be marvellous.

I also think it would set a standard - everyone knows someone that drives for a living, or does significant business mileage.

To labour a point about theatre (and many other industries) and the road, the theatre's duty of care to the public frequently extends beyond the boundaries of the building. When we operate in a public space we are just as stringently required to protect the public as if we were operating in our own premises.
We frequently have to load and unload trucks across a busy footway.
Many theatres are in such congested and labyrinthine locations that it takes over a dozen people to safely manoeuvre an artic in to its bay. We are expected to anticipate and mitigate against the stupidity of the public.
A serious incident here could have the same repercussions with the HSE as if it occurred in our space. However the consequences of a terrible 'accident' occurring once the truck is five minutes down the road after leaving the theatre are far less severe for the vehicles operators.

Are there legal barriers to the HSE caring about the trucks once they've left the theatre( or construction site, or distribution centre)? And if so, how do we remove them?!?

From a "common sense" viewpoint, it seems absurd that HSE stops once they're out on our highways.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: fboab on February 03, 2012, 08:17:56 pm
Quote from: fboab
Dear David Ruffley,

We don't have a city in Suffolk. Bury isn't a city, nor is Stowmarket, and I'd argue that Ipswich isn't either.
We do have cyclists though, and drivers. And often we don't have enough understanding by the drivers of the cyclists' point of view.
We do have a right to cycle on the roads- even if there's a cycle path alongside it, there is no such thing as road tax, we are entitled to courtesy and it's not illegal to ride without a helmet, or without wearing Hi-Vis.
Please could you support the Times Newspaper's campaign: Cities Fit For Cycling.
We have some of the finest countryside for cycling in, in Suffolk, and we should be making it better for people to cycle in. Not by making cycle routes, but by doing all we can to encourage motorists and cyclists to coexist safely.

Yours sincerely,

fboab
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: benborp on February 03, 2012, 09:21:36 pm
...legislation already exists for those working on roads and streets, from Food Hygiene for the kebab van to the various Road Traffic regulations that we're concerned with here. It's that legislation that needs enforcing, not other rules that need extending. We should be looking at Traffic Police and CPS not HSE.

The proper enforcement of current legislation would make a huge difference to the day to day lives of most cyclists and would probably save more than a handful of lives. It's something we should lobby for as strongly as for any of the other manifesto points in the Times' campaign.

There are factors surrounding the death of cyclists under the wheels of large vehicles that can't be addressed purely by legislation and enforcement though. On this forum many are aware that it is foolish to make assumptions about where the responsibility for any reported incident lies. Many also know of the difficulties of apportioning blame to a criminal standard. There are too many variables in each individual case. (It's not impossible to hypothesise a situation where a competent and diligent truck driver, driving a lorry with more than the legislated safety equipment could be involved in the death of a (legally considered) competent and diligent cyclist). It is apparent though that there are patterns and trends amongst HGV fatalities and that HGVs are involved in proportionally far more deaths than any other vehicle. This is where the HSE is very effective. The HSE is practised in identifying the causal factors in workplace injuries and issuing guidance to industry to limit further casualties. It is unthinkable that today an industry overseen by the HSE would be killing a dozen or so people a year in an almost identical manner and continuing to do so for over a decade.
Another aspect in which the HSE would be far more effective than new legislation is in providing oversight in the range of areas that need to be addressed to deal with HGV deaths. Legislation is not swift enough or flexible enough to deal with advancements in transport technology, training techniques, trends in urban redevelopment or human responses to official intervention in their day to day lives. The HSE deals with these interlocking fields across a wide range of industries and would be ideally suited to providing guidance to all the bodies involved in attempting to eliminate these deaths.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 04, 2012, 08:58:12 am
The Torygraph's Brendan O'Neill wades in against The Times campaign (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/brendanoneill2/100134915/cyclists-are-pompous-enough-as-it-is-–-a-cycling-covenant-would-make-them-unbearable/).
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: red marley on February 04, 2012, 09:32:54 am
A headline "Cyclists are pompous enough as it is" written by the editor of "an online phenomenon dedicated to raising the horizons of humanity by waging a culture war of words against misanthropy, priggishness, prejudice, luddism, illiberalism, and irrationalism in all their ancient and modern forms"

Somewhere in the multiverse an entire universe just collapsed in on itself trying to resolve that particular paradox.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 04, 2012, 09:37:37 am
I'd guess that the telegraph cannot afford to be pro-cycling as it may rely more on the car industry for advertising than the times with its pay wall.

Often editorial policy is affected by paymasters.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 04, 2012, 12:02:34 pm
Telegraph says:
Quote
The Times wants ... drivers in general to be re-educated in the importance of always keeping one’s eyes peeled for those on two wheels.
Quote
and in the next paragraph
Quote
Of course, if road safety can be improved to reduce the number of cycling deaths, then let’s do it
As if they hadn't just dismissed the most important and simplest way to do this.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 04, 2012, 12:14:16 pm
I thought I should say something more about the HSE as I've probably given the impression I want them abolished or something like that. And then I'll shut up about them. In fact, I think their remit should be extended to include some aspects of what van drivers, couriers and probably taxi drivers do, along the lines of HGV and coach drivers, at least as regards working and driving hours. Unfortunately AFAIK there is no legislation on hours or training for these groups currently. But what I don't think is that they can any main focus of traffic safety, for these reasons:
- They can, obviously, only deal with working vehicles. Cars outnumber all of these added together.
- They are the most appropriate agency to deal with aspects of work connected with HGV drivers etc, for instance loading and unloading, smoking in cabs, etc, but for traffic safety it is more appropriate to have it all dealt with and enforced by traffic police. That's why we have traffic regulations affecting all traffic!
- Last and least, it's well known that in London there is a big problem with lorries and cyclists, particularly tipper trucks and cement lorries. This does seem to be a London-specific problem and so emphasising HSE's role focusses the whole campaign on London - but London already gets a lot of attention and if this is to be a nationwide effort as the Times intends, it has to look at other cities. Ideally, as Boab has pointed out, it shouldn't stop at cities.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 04, 2012, 12:17:03 pm
Plenty of car drivers are driving for work.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: andygates on February 04, 2012, 01:09:08 pm
HGVs and tippers and such are mainly a problem in the dense urban core.  They were a real bear in Oxford when I were a nipper.  The difference is, you could clear the entire urban core in five minutes.  London's is just the biggest.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 06, 2012, 07:48:09 pm
The Times prints a correction re: 'road tax.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311131.ece

Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: andygates on February 06, 2012, 07:51:22 pm
My frustration has reached pustule point and popped.  Clearly what the squishies need while this Brave New World is being made is a PSA:

"You wouldn't jump into lava! You wouldn't feed your legs into a woodchipper! So why would you ride up the inside of a lorry?"

With super gory puppets.  And maybe a Beaker in the throw zone getting smooshed after doing The Science Bit.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 06, 2012, 07:53:10 pm
The Times prints a correction re: 'road tax.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311131.ece

Good link Andy; but of what is it a correction?  ???
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Honest John on February 06, 2012, 08:54:35 pm
So we have Cracknell (an oarsman IICR) proselytising on behalf of funny hats, the old road tax troll-favourite and Jon Snow of all people calling for licensing.

Glad I ignored this News International marketing exercise.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 07, 2012, 12:47:50 am
Of those it is Cracknell and his magic hat that piss me off the most.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Crumbling Nick on February 07, 2012, 02:25:39 am
The Times prints a correction re: 'road tax.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311131.ece
I'm slightly puzzled that I haven't noticed that one in today's paper version.

Does anyone know whether it was printed &, if so, in which editions?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Philip Benstead on February 07, 2012, 08:25:45 am

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311182.ece


Cyclists in Paris can ignore the red traffic light
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Diver300 on February 07, 2012, 08:47:48 am

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311182.ece


Cyclists in Paris can ignore the red traffic light

They will only be allowed to ignore ones that have a yellow bike symbol, and then only turning right or going straight on.

Interestingly:-

Quote
A total of 496 were fined €35 for using a mobile telephone on their bicycle.

Does that mean that the fine was €0.07?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Honest John on February 07, 2012, 09:38:20 am
So we have Cracknell (an oarsman IICR) proselytising on behalf of funny hats, the old road tax troll-favourite and Jon Snow of all people calling for licensing.

Glad I ignored this News International marketing exercise.

Now they're banging on about "cycling infrastructure".

I would hope (dream?) this meant the building of municipal, guarded, secure, covered bicycle parks, like the Dutch fietsstallings. However I suspect it really means cr@p cycle paths intended to get dem pesky cyclists out of the way of Decent People in Cars.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: hatler on February 07, 2012, 09:46:21 am
As has been pointed out many times in various locations and far more eloquently than I will manage in the next few sentences, creating 'cycling infrastructure' is unlikely to succeed (whatever 'succeed' means) in most urban locations.

Given the apparent huge unrealised demand for cycling, any facility built now will not cope with the number of cyclists wanting to use it, especially so where road space is limited due to legacy street plans.

Just look at the blue routes into London now, they're already overfull and we've hardly scratched the surface of those who want to cycle (and authorities seem to be trying to persuade to cycle).
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 07, 2012, 11:20:44 am

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3311182.ece


Cyclists in Paris can ignore the red traffic light

They will only be allowed to ignore ones that have a yellow bike symbol, and then only turning right or going straight on.
They're introducing on an experimental basis what applies to all traffic in some countries.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 09, 2012, 09:46:05 am
'Keen cyclist' Cameron and Labour express support for campaign:

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3313881.ece
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: asterix on February 09, 2012, 04:27:14 pm
Have received a reply from my MP:


Quote
Thank you for your recent email about The Times' Cities fit for Cycling Campaign.

I appreciate you taking the time to write to me about this matter and I agree that there needs to be improvements on our road network to make cycling safer. I also believe that more needs to be done to improve awareness amongst both drivers and cyclists using our busy road network.

As a member of the Transport Select Committee we have looked into ways to encourage people to cycle more and we are also in the middle of a road safety inquiry. Through this latest inquiry it has been pointed out that new EU legislation on HGVs has been implemented requiring blind spot mirrors to be fitted to all new vehicles and to retro-fit to old vehicles; which is something I support in the drive to make cycling safer.

I agree with you that improvements to the driving test are needed in a number of areas, not just regarding cycle safety.

I would also support the case for more dedicated cycle tracks, where possible, and better enforcement of traffic rules for both motorists and cyclists. On this point, I have noticed through my time as a pedestrian, in both York and London, some cyclists tend to have less regard for pedestrian crossings than motorists.

I have recently written to the Department of Transport on this matter and as soon as I receive a response I will be happy to send this on to you.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to write to me about this matter.

My bolds. 

I am disappointed.  Any comments would be interesting as I think I may respond back.


Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 09, 2012, 05:07:49 pm
I would say your MP's experiences of who ignores pedestrian crossings are purely anecdotal.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 09, 2012, 05:51:45 pm
I think I can summarise that letter:

"Perhaps you should get a car, sonny."
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 09, 2012, 08:10:54 pm
Cycle safety on the Daily Politics (from approx. 52.30)

 http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01c1979/Daily_Politics_09_02_2012/

Nigel Farage is predictably tosserish.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: phil d on February 09, 2012, 10:00:12 pm
I would say your MP's experiences of who ignores pedestrian crossings are purely anecdotal.

On the contrary; as worded it is difficult to find fault with that particular comment.  Though it is perhaps not very helpful to the argument.

Some cyclists (including some here) do indeed consider that red lights don't apply to them.  I have often seen cyclists barging through pedestrian crossings (in Reading).  On one occasion, when I remonstrated with a cyclist who very nearly knocked me over on a crossing I was met with a torrent of abuse which started "You drivers are all the f**k**g same..." ???

But this is a digression.  Somehow the "them and us" culture has to be broken down.  Reading many of the threads here it is clear that these divisive attitudes are as prevalent among cyclists as they are among motorists.  We have to learn to respect each other.  And to earn that respect.  Cuts both ways.

It will be interesting to see if the Times campaign lasts.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 09, 2012, 10:02:26 pm
All the letters in The Times today that were about cycling were anti.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Pickled Onion on February 10, 2012, 07:56:06 am
I would say your MP's experiences of who ignores pedestrian crossings are purely anecdotal.

On the contrary; as worded it is difficult to find fault with that particular comment.  Though it is perhaps not very helpful to the argument.

True, but as worded it doesn't really mean much. It would also be true to say "Some motorists have less regard for pedestrian crossings than cyclists". The "some" may or may not be different in each case, but the statement can stand by itself either way round. Anecdotally, only yesterday I watched a "professional" driver set off through a light that had been red for some time, making contact with a pedestrian who had to leap out of the way. That was probably down to inattention/stupidity rather than deliberate, but that's probably more worrying.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 10, 2012, 07:59:54 am
Asterix, show your MP this video (http://youtu.be/np2akcsMtbU).
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Nuncio on February 10, 2012, 08:26:24 am
The Lords were talking about this on Tuesday http://www.theyworkforyou.com/lords/?id=2012-02-08a.257.7 (http://www.theyworkforyou.com/lords/?id=2012-02-08a.257.7)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: fboab on February 20, 2012, 08:41:07 pm
I too have had a reply from my mp's office.
I don't think his researchers actually read what I wrote.
The guy is a tosser of the first order but I'm going to continue the debate as otherwise he'll continue to get away with being a pointless parasite.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Crumbling Nick on February 20, 2012, 10:34:54 pm
I would say your MP's experiences of who ignores pedestrian crossings are purely anecdotal.

On the contrary; as worded it is difficult to find fault with that particular comment.  Though it is perhaps not very helpful to the argument.

True, but as worded it doesn't really mean much. It would also be true to say "Some motorists have less regard for pedestrian crossings than cyclists". The "some" may or may not be different in each case, but the statement can stand by itself either way round. Anecdotally, only yesterday I watched a "professional" driver set off through a light that had been red for some time, making contact with a pedestrian who had to leap out of the way. That was probably down to inattention/stupidity rather than deliberate, but that's probably more worrying.

Where I live, Zebra crossings have almost disappeared, to be replaced by an assortment of traffic light controlled crossings.

The justification is that it reduces casualities (presumably KSIs). I haven't researched the validity of that assertion :-[. But if it were true, it would be unbeliveable that cyclists caused a lot of the casualities.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 20, 2012, 10:40:14 pm
I detest the light controlled crossings for they ceed power to the motorist.

I would not have an issue if the lights changed when you pressed the button; but they do not. You stand there for random lengths of time as motorists who were in a different county when you pressed the button sail past you.

What ever happened to the British art of queuing eh?

Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 20, 2012, 10:47:49 pm
I detest the light controlled crossings for they ceed power to the motorist.

I would not have an issue if the lights changed when you pressed the button; but they do not. You stand there for random lengths of time as motorists who were in a different county when you pressed the button sail past you.

What ever happened to the British art of queuing eh?
Some change quite quickly, most do not. A person from Bristol Cycling Campaign who's in contact with the council explained to me that most of the new ones work on a ten-second delay because if they change instantly, it's unsafe - people get used to them changing immediately and walk straight across without looking. Apparently. I find this explanation unconvincing, because if the lights start changing the instant you press the button, they still have to go through the amber phase and a second or so of red before the green man lights up. Another thing is that the Puffin design, with the red/green man on the button next to you rather than on the opposite side of the road, encourages crossers to look at the light rather than the traffic, IMO. In fact they make it hard to even see the approaching traffic because the box is at eye level on a pole between you and the traffic.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 20, 2012, 11:12:00 pm
I find it an unconvincing argument too, given that they generally replace Zebra crossings. You remember those? The ones that drivers had to slow down at if there were pedestrians about, and had to stop at if the merest sliver of pedestrian toenail crossed  the kerb.

No doubt - light controlled crossings are 100% for the motorist. They throw away the notion of first come first served and match Beeching and Marple in brutalism.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 20, 2012, 11:18:43 pm
We still have a fair number of zebras in Bristol, at least on Gloucester Rd and Whiteladies Rd. There's one I often use to get from the Sheffield stands on one side of the road to the greengrocer's directly opposite and it works very well. But definitely there are fewer than there used to be. I think one factor is that motorists don't tend to stop for pedestrians on zebras as their speeds rise nearer to and above 30mph or thereabouts. Not that they can't stop, but they don't like to!
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Crumbling Nick on February 21, 2012, 12:35:12 am
I detest the light controlled crossings for they ceed power to the motorist.

I would not have an issue if the lights changed when you pressed the button; but they do not. You stand there for random lengths of time as motorists who were in a different county when you pressed the button sail past you.

What ever happened to the British art of queuing eh?
It's much more subtle than that.

Our local pedestrian lights fall into 3 categories.
1) Press the button and the words "WAIT" light up. It amazes me that so many pedestrians haven't realised that that is the only effect it has.
2) Press the button and eventually you'll get your turn to cross. There would have been plenty of time to cross while the traffic lights were red or amber, if the vehicular users of the road obeyed the law, but that's unrealistic.
3) Press the button & wait for the response. When a gap occurs in the traffic, cross anyway. Look back & see the lights change. Watch the cars queue for an already obsolete reason. Wonder why anyone (aka Highway Engineer/ politician overruling anyone with common sense) is stupid/ignorant enough not to realise why this is Not A Good Idea.
 
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on February 21, 2012, 07:38:59 am
I too have had a reply from my mp's office.
I don't think his researchers actually read what I wrote.
The guy is a tosser of the first order but I'm going to continue the debate as otherwise he'll continue to get away with being a pointless parasite.

I have had a reply from local MP as well. Despite saying in his opening line...
Quote
I commend The Times for highlighting this important issue and I know ministers will consider the points raised as part of their ongoing work to improve safety for cyclists.
There is then two pages of coalition speil about road safety and how Britain remains a world leader.
He completely side stepped the question on my original contact, which was has he signed up.
I will write a follow up this afternoon, although Its questionable what use it is.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 21, 2012, 09:34:25 am
3) Press the button & wait for the response. When a gap occurs in the traffic, cross anyway. Look back & see the lights change. Watch the cars queue for an already obsolete reason. Wonder why anyone (aka Highway Engineer/ politician overruling anyone with common sense) is stupid/ignorant enough not to realise why this is Not A Good Idea.
 
This is what the Puffin crossings were designed to tackle (I think). Thanks to their infrared sensors they can detect if the person waiting to cross has already done so before the lights change or has crossed quicker than the allotted time - quite easy if you're young and fit and in a hurry - and so cancel or shorten the red phase. Of course this would be avoided if the lights changed as soon as you pressed the button. They can also extend the red  light phase if you take longer than the allotted time to cross - probably more common than the quicker scenario. So they should be beneficial to pedestrians and traffic flow, compared to Pelicans. They still do make pedestrians wait for the light though - perhaps that's the worst thing about all light-controlled crossings, they show that drivers are more willing to stop for an inanimate coloured light than a person.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Salvatore on February 21, 2012, 09:42:34 am
Pedestrians patiently waiting as the timer counts down the amount of waiting time. Debrecen, Hungary.

(http://i1104.photobucket.com/albums/h323/nocensure/Romania008.jpg)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 21, 2012, 09:46:47 am
Yes, at least in Britain we're not bound by law to wait for the green man on penalty of paying a fine - and I do know people who've been fined for it.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on February 21, 2012, 09:50:13 am
I detest the light controlled crossings for they ceed power to the motorist.

I would not have an issue if the lights changed when you pressed the button; but they do not. You stand there for random lengths of time as motorists who were in a different county when you pressed the button sail past you.

What ever happened to the British art of queuing eh?
Some change quite quickly, most do not. A person from Bristol Cycling Campaign who's in contact with the council explained to me that most of the new ones work on a ten-second delay because if they change instantly, it's unsafe - people get used to them changing immediately and walk straight across without looking. Apparently.
I had a discussion with an official, years ago now, about shortening the wait at a 'toucan' where a sustrans route crosses a rural road. I was told there was some minimum wait where the road's speed limit was 40mph+. I can't see any good justification for this.

A sort of lose-lose for the vulnerable road users!
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on February 21, 2012, 09:57:57 am
Yes, at least in Britain we're not bound by law to wait for the green man on penalty of paying a fine - and I do know people who've been fined for it.

I horrified people in germany by crossing the road when it was perfectly safe, but not legal. 

I didn't know :-[

My favourite pedestrian crossing is in Carshalton, where the shared use path crosses the High Street.  It changes pretty much straight away.

Least favourite is crossing Trinity Road, Wandsworth at the Common.  You can wait for aaaaaages on a tiny bit of pavement filling rapidly with weans arriving waiting to cross.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 21, 2012, 10:08:31 am
Yes, at least in Britain we're not bound by law to wait for the green man on penalty of paying a fine - and I do know people who've been fined for it.

I horrified people in germany by crossing the road when it was perfectly safe, but not legal. 

I didn't know :-[
I do know, but I ignore this law anyway (when I'm in Poland) - unless there's a policeman around! In fact Polish pedestrians are increasingly following the 'British' pattern - I don't think it's all my doing! Also, drivers there are starting to follow the British pattern at zebras, ie stopping when someone is waiting rather than simply to avoid mowing them down.  :thumbsup: At least in bigger places - I think it must be an effect of increasing traffic densities.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 21, 2012, 10:20:42 am
Here the Puffin crossing appears to be set to change only when there is a Puffin waiting to cross.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: ian on February 21, 2012, 11:44:09 am
We have quite a few zebra crossings here. To be honest, you'd probably need to be helping a zebra to cross to get drivers to notice them. Surprisingly, even on the steppes of Greater Croydonia, actual zebras are impractical to get a hold of. It's not so bad when there is dense traffic, but outside of those times, vehicles get to speed up and the little thought that goes through most drivers' brains seems to be 'why stop, there's no one behind me, they can cross then.' Of course, they never check there's anyone behind them. You also get the convoys, were all the following vehicles are so intent on the car in front they don't even notice the crossings. Mostly, it's a case of fixing the approaching drivers with a steely stare and stepping out like you mean it. Carrying a rocket launcher or large calibre automatic weapon would probably help. More prosaically, you do need your wits about you, especially when the traffic can get up 40 mph. There's been one death recently, and a seriously injured child, which says something about the traffic on that road.

There's another zebra crossing down by the station. That's not nice either, mostly because drivers can't manage both a junction and a crossing. The neural input is too much and their brains parboil in their own cerebro-spinal fluid, which means they drive even worse that usual, which might have previously seemed impossible.

They ought to be safe and perfect for the situation, but in practice, the standard of driving and level of respect for pedestrians isn't there. I imagine at some point the burghers of Croydonia will replace them with light-controlled crossings, which are The Worst Way to Manage a Road Crossing Ever. I do wonder if the people behind those things ever cross a road. Perhaps they have special portable tunnels or bridges they carry around with them, so don't have to bother with their creations. They simply have some kind of quantum wormhole device. Why did the traffic engineer cross the road? Because the relevant probability function said he had.

There's a wonderful one in Peckham High Street that combines one of those eye-level indicators (useful in a crowd, I'm sure) with a wait time measured in geological era. Peckham is not exactly known for its law abiding ways (the police pulled out in 2006 and it's now a UN mandate, probably) so impatience wins out and people end up facing-off traffic. Then, like they've watched first penguin to jump into a sea that might have hidden a hungry killer whale, everyone else streams out. Power to the people. So the light is green, the crossing indicator is red, but the cars are stuck anyway. Of course, once the pedestrians have crossed, the light turns red and the cars are stuck at an empty crossing. Rinse and repeat. I tried to think of a worse way to manage a road crossing, but short of flooding the road and adding actual killer whales, I couldn't.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on February 21, 2012, 12:08:27 pm
I'm all in favour of button operated pedestrian crossings, so long as they are usually red for the motor traffic and green for pedestrians.  Approaching motorists should push a button and wait for a ridiculous length of time (at least until the pedestrian way has been empty for a full minute) before the lights change.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: David Martin on February 21, 2012, 01:12:53 pm
I have yet to determine why I have to wait for vehicles that are over a quarter of a mile away, which puts them beyond the next junction, before I get the go ahead to cross the road. It really is a reversal of the hierarchy that should be in place.

Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: teethgrinder on February 21, 2012, 06:27:03 pm
I operate a crossing karma system when I'm walking. If I want to cross the road, I push the button anyway and I'll cross if it's safe, regardless of what colour the lights are. Hopefully, it helps someone else cross the road too, as when they reach the crossing I used a short while ago, the lights will be in their favour.
I think we should all do this and extend it, so that whenever you pass a pedestrian crossing, you push the button whether you want to cross or not. By the time the lights have changed, someone may want to cross the road and they won't have to wait.
If nobody wants to cross the road, then that's just bad luck for anything on the road. It's quite normal at other light controlled junctions to have to wait for the lights to change when the road is clear.

For zebra crossings, what's needed is a pram full of concrete pushed in front.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Karla on February 21, 2012, 06:30:35 pm
Gaaarrgghh TG, you're one of those people I hate, aren't you  ;) I get really wound up by people who press the button before actually looking to see whether or not they can cross - what's the point in delaying other people when you could just cross the road straight away? 
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 21, 2012, 06:36:39 pm
That concrete pram made I larf!!!  ;D
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: AndyK on February 21, 2012, 06:41:09 pm
Gaaarrgghh TG, you're one of those people I hate, aren't you  ;) I get really wound up by people who press the button before actually looking to see whether or not they can cross - what's the point in delaying other people when you could just cross the road straight away?

It's Pavlovian. Today it seems the majority of those under 40 cannot use a crossing unless they press a button and a little green man lights up. Even if the road is completely empty they will still press that button.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: teethgrinder on February 21, 2012, 06:43:42 pm
Gaaarrgghh TG, you're one of those people I hate, aren't you  ;) I get really wound up by people who press the button before actually looking to see whether or not they can cross - what's the point in delaying other people when you could just cross the road straight away?

Apart from the fact that some other pedestrian may be able to cross without a lengthy wait, there is also the chance that I may have caused an impatient motorist to stop because a light is red, when they probably would have just bullied their way past a pedestrian crossing the road.
I also find it amusing when I'm on the recieving end on my bike and have to wait for the invisible man to cross the road. :D Even more so when others around me get annoyed.
People seem not to mind so much waiting at red traffic lights when the road is clear. ::-)

Saying all that. I was glad that a woman didn't press the button when I was riding a 25 mile TT because I was the only thing on the road at the time. There was a marshall stationed there to report anyone jumping the red light and any offending rider would be disqualified.
Still didn't do a very good time though. :'( :D
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Kim on February 21, 2012, 06:46:08 pm
I think we should all do this and extend it, so that whenever you pass a pedestrian crossing, you push the button whether you want to cross or not.

I believe this is compulsory for the under-fives.  I used to delight in stopping enormous lorries on the Archway Road as a small child.   :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 21, 2012, 06:48:51 pm
Some teenage girls once stopped me in Streatham without crossing the road, so I told them to "have a salad". I felt a bit bad about being such a meanie, but it was funny hearing them: "Shut up! Shut up!".
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on February 21, 2012, 06:50:45 pm
Gaaarrgghh TG, you're one of those people I hate, aren't you  ;) I get really wound up by people who press the button before actually looking to see whether or not they can cross - what's the point in delaying other people when you could just cross the road straight away?

It's Pavlovian. Today it seems the majority of those under 40 cannot use a crossing unless they press a button and a little green man lights up. Even if the road is completely empty they will still press that button.

Or just stand next to the button without pressing, playing with their mobile phone.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 21, 2012, 10:49:19 pm
Here the Puffin crossing appears to be set to change only when there is a Puffin waiting to cross.
Are you on Lundy?  :)
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on February 22, 2012, 12:40:17 am
Some teenage girls once stopped me in Streatham without crossing the road, so I told them to "have a salad". I felt a bit bad about being such a meanie, but it was funny hearing them: "Shut up! Shut up!".

So, how fat were they  ???
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Wendy on February 22, 2012, 08:23:07 am
Some teenage girls once stopped me in Streatham without crossing the road, so I told them to "have a salad". I felt a bit bad about being such a meanie, but it was funny hearing them: "Shut up! Shut up!".

So, how fat were they  ???

Not at all, but it clearly hit home.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on February 22, 2012, 09:49:25 am
I remember riding round Swindon on my motorbike some time around 1990 - one of those foolish things you do when young! - and some of the zebra crossings there were raised, like a large, stripy speed bump. I think these were removed sometime later. In some other countries speed bumps are often placed on the approach to zebras - and those tend to be proper bumps, like half a mains water pipe tarmacced into the road, as opposed to the rather mild ones favoured here. I'm not sure which of these methods works best, if either. They also seem to be installing some zebras in Brizzle which are flush, no step up/down the kerb, but the gradient is gradual so vehicles don't experience any bump. Good for wheeled footway users, obviously, but they haven't finished them yet so I'll reserve judgment for the time being.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on February 23, 2012, 09:06:26 am
Does anyone know if there is any coverage from the House of Commons today?
I see its in the Westminster Hall from 2.30pm until 5.30

http://services.parliament.uk/calendar/#!/calendar/Commons/WestminsterHall/2012/2/23/events.html
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: fboab on February 24, 2012, 10:19:41 am
Quote from: fboab
Mr Ruffley,

Not long ago, I contacted you about cycling. I asked you to support the Times' Campaign. Your researchers replied with a very cut & paste-d stock response which did not address any of the specifics I raised.

It was therefore no real surprise to me that you did not sign the Early Day Motion, nor take part in the debate.

Are you completely unconcerned for the safety of cyclists and other vulnerable road users?

Are you happy that everything that could be done, is being done?

Perhaps you could justify this action (or rather, inaction) to me?

fboab
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on December 13, 2012, 02:27:58 pm
And as the editor of the Times is pushed out, who knows what will happen to this campaign.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Redlight on December 13, 2012, 07:51:22 pm
And as the editor of the Times is pushed out, who knows what will happen to this campaign.

I've had some dealings with his successor and don't hold out much hope.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Notsototalnewbie on December 14, 2012, 04:04:43 pm
The lorry driver who hit Mary Bowers has been given an eight-month ban and a £2700 fine. The jury convicted him of being guilty of careless (not dangerous) driving. He admits to being on his (handsfree) phone at the time he hit her.

She was in ‘direct sight’ through his windscreen for at least ten seconds, and after he jumped out of the cab when he heard her screams, he left the handbrake off and the vehicle continued to roll over her. He admits he ‘should have looked better’.

I feel sick.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on December 14, 2012, 04:07:34 pm
£2700? one months wage, maybe a bit more.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Notsototalnewbie on December 14, 2012, 04:14:21 pm
I think the thing that upsets me most is that the jurors could have found him guilty of dangerous driving, and they decided he was just careless. It just goes to show where the general public’s sympathies lie. Careless in charge of an HGV is dangerous, IMO.

I’ve been following her sister’s blog, The Waiting Room, mostly because we have a mutual friend (I don’t know Mary). While her sister does a good job of making it as upbeat and positive as she can manage, I know where my sympathies lie.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on December 14, 2012, 04:19:51 pm
The lorry driver who hit Mary Bowers has been given an eight-month ban and a £2700 fine. The jury convicted him of being guilty of careless (not dangerous) driving. He admits to being on his (handsfree) phone at the time he hit her.

She was in ‘direct sight’ through his windscreen for at least ten seconds, and after he jumped out of the cab when he heard her screams, he left the handbrake off and the vehicle continued to roll over her. He admits he ‘should have looked better’.

I feel sick.

Me too.

I agree that some of these recent cases do show where most people's sympathies lie. Scary.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Jaded on December 14, 2012, 05:25:49 pm
When legislators, police, prosecutors, defenders, judges and juries are drivers, there is bound to be a bias in the system.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on December 14, 2012, 05:30:05 pm
But just once, one of them has to be a cyclist as well??
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on December 14, 2012, 06:53:19 pm
http://www.standard.co.uk/news/crime/2700-fine-is-an-insult-says-father-of-critically-injured-cyclist-mary-bowers-8417866.html

That lot really makes me wonder what sort of people were on the jury in terms of the attitudes they brought to bear during their deliberations. Or perhaps the judge's directions were such that they were constrained in some way for legal reasons that are beyond me.

Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on December 15, 2012, 02:35:10 pm
http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3632283.ece

The judge's comments after the verdict:

Quote
During legal discussions, the judge had made clear that a guilty verdict would result in a custodial sentence.
After the jury verdict, the judge said that her “hands were tied” over sentencing, adding: “The irony is Mary Bowers has barely recovered but had she not survived, the situation would be very different.”
Causing death by dangerous driving carries a maximum 14-year sentence whereas causing death by careless driving carries a maximum five-year sentence. There is no custodial option for careless driving.

How would it be "very different"? Look at the dooring case: even if Mary Bowers had died, the jury probably still would not have convicted. They only bothered to spend an hour on their decision on this occasion.

At least we have this:

Quote
Outside the court, Beiu said that he was devastated by the incident. “I will regret it for the rest of my life. I will never drive lorries again,” he said.

These verdicts mean that there is no deterrent effect for other dangerous drivers.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Domestique on December 15, 2012, 02:48:47 pm
Its making me question how else can I be more cautious around these large killers.
But what is frightening me more is the thought that there will also be people reading these reports who will now drive their killing machines with even less care.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: spindrift on December 15, 2012, 03:41:10 pm
Perhaps we are expected to knock on the lorry door if we notice a driver behind us at the lights chatting on a mobile and say:

"Sorry, excuse me, I am here!"
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: mattc on December 15, 2012, 04:37:55 pm
When legislators, police, prosecutors, defenders, judges and juries are drivers, there is bound to be a bias in the system.
Shouldn't the Man on the Clapham Omnibus get a say? :(
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: hellymedic on December 15, 2012, 04:44:06 pm
The people on the Clapham omnibus have just acquitted a driver who opened his door into a cyclist's path of manslaughter.
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: Flynn on December 21, 2012, 09:20:40 am
Boris Johnson refuses to apologise for "sixty per cent of cyclists responsible for collisions…" comment, and demands Jenny Jones apologises for saying cycling in London is "getting more dangerous (for cyclists)".

http://youtu.be/jsNHV2wsO-0
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: clarion on December 21, 2012, 09:21:20 am
Boorish Johnson?
Title: Re: Cities fit for cycling
Post by: David Martin on December 21, 2012, 09:39:42 am
, and demands Jenny Jones apologises for saying cycling in London is "getting more dangerous (for cyclists)".

And so she should - the accident rate per mile or per hour cycled has been dropping year on year. Boris should man up and say sorry too.