Author Topic: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements  (Read 923 times)

fd3

Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« on: July 14, 2020, 02:27:51 pm »
My wife is on a family cycling FB page where there are a growing number of reports of police instructing them off the road onto the pavement.

My first thought was "get badge number/license plate and do a formal complaint".  I did wonder, though, is there not something along the lines of only traffic police are supposed to instruct traffic - e.g. if it's just a cop car on the prowl they aren't allowed to police your driving (though they could pull you over for a stop and search)?  I could be wrong.
[/I could be wrong]

Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2020, 02:54:28 pm »
The advice from the Minister of State for Home Affairs to the Chief of Police back in 1999 is still considered to be in force regarding advising the police to use discretion as some cyclists may feel the need to use pavements for their own safety/security. Obviously they need to do so responsibly, so you can't just blast along the pavement quoting Paul Boateng MP from 1999.

https://road.cc/content/news/108119-transport-minister-responsible-cyclists-can-ride-pavement

Maybe it's a case of "you know what, you might be better off cycling along the pavement here if you're careful" from the Police.

I'd take anything I read on (or have reported from) FB with an industrial bag of Sodium Chloride.
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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2020, 03:21:21 pm »
I've never heard that only traffic police are supposed to instruct traffic. There's something in the Highway Code about police directing traffic and it says it refers to traffic wardens too, but not restricted to specific traffic police. But Fuzzy will be along in a while, he'll know.
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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2020, 03:22:58 pm »
Plus I'm not sure cyclists count as "traffic" in that context. And aren't you supposed to obey "lawful commands" from a Constable?
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ElyDave

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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2020, 04:30:55 pm »
is it a lawful command to say "ride on the pavement or I'll nick you"?

My understanding is that even if e.g. a shared use path is available, you are under no obligation to use it.  There is one such near me that I'm loath to use because it's full of slow cyclists who aren't aware of speed differential, pedestrians with earbuds, crosses several side roads that vehicles tear in and out of, and eventually departs from my direction of travel.  As a reasonably fast road cyclist it's likely create more problems than it solves, whilct I'm not holding up traffic any more than a tractor would.
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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2020, 04:50:26 pm »
I have twice in the last year been asked nicely by a policeman if I would mind riding on the pavement at traffic light controlled road works. We do have rather a lot of roadworks around here at the present.
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fd3

Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2020, 05:59:45 pm »
Being asked to ride on a pavement by a police officer is being asked to breaka da laww. 

I must be getting confused on the traffic police requirement, I think it's CPSOs who aren't allowed to do traffic.
[/I could be wrong]

Regulator

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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2020, 07:31:43 am »
Being asked to ride on a pavement by a police officer is being asked to breaka da laww. 

I must be getting confused on the traffic police requirement, I think it's CPSOs who aren't allowed to do traffic.


In England and Wales, those empowered to direct traffic are a constable, a PCSO and a traffic officer (from the Highways Agency).  This includes the power to direct pedestrians and cyclists. See the Police Reform Act 2002 (in the case of PCSOs) and the Traffic Management Act 2004 (in the case of traffic officers).  Failure to comply with a direction of a constable, a PCSO or a traffic officer is an offence.

However, you cannot lawfully be directed/compelled to use a cycle path/track if you are also entitled to use the road (e.g. it is not a restricted road) and it is otherwise open to traffic.  There is some case law around this - I'll see if I can dig it out.
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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2020, 11:12:31 am »
Ask for it in writing ;)
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Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2020, 11:13:14 am »
However, you cannot lawfully be directed/compelled to use a cycle path/track if you are also entitled to use the road (e.g. it is not a restricted road) and it is otherwise open to traffic.  There is some case law around this - I'll see if I can dig it out.

R v Cadden would seem relevant...

Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2020, 11:15:54 am »
R v Cadden would seem relevant...
I was just looking that up.  amazing it is 13 years ago.  https://www.camcycle.org.uk/newsletters/71/article14.html

Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2020, 11:57:16 am »
However, you cannot lawfully be directed/compelled to use a cycle path/track if you are also entitled to use the road (e.g. it is not a restricted road) and it is otherwise open to traffic.  There is some case law around this - I'll see if I can dig it out.

R v Cadden would seem relevant...
... as long as in doing so you are not being unreasonably inconsiderate to other traffic, which in this case the judge found he was not, due to the lightness of traffic and his speed (which was too high for the shared used path). The judge also made clear he was not setting a precedent for all scenarios.


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fd3

Re: Police instructing people to cycle on pavements
« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2020, 10:53:11 am »
"unreasonably inconsiderate to traffic"

I don't know where to start with this.
[/I could be wrong]