Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

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Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  shaman on Thu May 30, 2013 11:18 pm

Why are we not allowed in these boxes? This is a big issue imo, because we're going to get stranded in oncoming traffic.

I stay out when I can, but there are times when it is safer to enter the empty box cyclists don't bother with anyway.

So now they are talking about handing power to councils to hand out more fines?

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/transport/60-fines-and-cctv-crackdown-on-drivers-who-stop-in-bike-boxes-at-traffic-lights-8635559.html

I wonder if we could get together more than 10 people to visit city hall and try to make a case?

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Ballistic on Fri May 31, 2013 12:30 am

I'm in....can we drive our bikes to the doors and jam them in...like in good old days at WCC? Twisted Evil

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  shaman on Tue Jun 18, 2013 4:19 am

Apparently:

a) loads of them are illegal - they have no filter lane or broken line for cyclists to legally enter.

b) the rest of them which do conform to the standard are not used legally by most cyclists, who cross the first solid line and therefore commit the same offence as motorists encroaching.

So they are all practically unenforceable.

Do think this is an area we could explore though, to widen participation, focusing on motorcycle matters in and around london, where the bike tax is based.

Motorcycles should be allowed in these boxes imo, or if not there should be warning signs on the approach so we don't 'discover' them once we've filtered up and it's a choice between staying in a vulnerable position or breaching the ASL.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Earl Purple on Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:46 am

The issue is that if motorcyclists are not allowed in them with threat of a fine, we are likely to occupy all the filter space at the edge of the line and thus cyclists will have no access to them either.

Far better we share them.

At present there is no such offence of stopping in an advance box, there is only an offence of crossing on a red signal, which is essentially what you are doing if you drive into it. There would have to be a change of law for this, but then what happens when traffic is in the box (perhaps in a traffic queue or just behind a yellow box junction) and the light turns red? They usually end up stuck in this box, which is actually not an offence at present, but causes more of a problem than a few motorcyclists moving into it.

I'd rather they create an "offence" of blocking the area by a traffic island to prevent filtering and start enforcing that. Perhaps put little yellow boxes on the tarmac to create a proper filter lane at them.

A bigger "issue" I find is where a cycle filter lane is on the left-hand side at a junction, and cyclists crowd into it. You, on a motorcycle or even in a car are clearly indicating left, and when the light goes green there are a bunch of cyclists on your left, all going ahead. That is an extremely dangerous situation and it does not surprise me there are accidents. They are told not to pass left-turning traffic on the left but continously do so when there is a lane marked with a cycle in it because they think it doesn't apply in this situation, and this filter lane is where they are supposed to be.

Please therefore, have filter lanes BETWEEN lanes.

Incidentally, the technically correct thing for us to do is not to filter to the front but into the position between the front and 2nd vehicle. This is because the front vehicle is presumably at the stop line, so we cannot go ahead of where they are. That is, unless they either have not moved up to the stop line, or there is a huge gap between the two front vehicles. I know most of us still go to the very front.

If this is TFL we are referring to, I would like to "lobby" them to create better motorcycle filter facility on certain main roads. (Particularly around late afternoon when motor vehicles seem to clog up both the A406 and the A41 north of Brent Cross. What they did at Henlys Corner was simply not good enough... And there is still no proper filter space for getting from the North Circular west-bound onto the A1 Great North Way).

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  shaman on Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:20 am

In my tour of the cycle lobby on the web, I discovered many of them think the filter lane on the left is dangerous and encourages bad practice amongst cyclists (I agree and I would likely ignore the rule if I was cycling, as it's safety first for me).

There is a fair amount of talking about some 2-3 year old proposals to amend the law so cyclists can just cross the first line and there need be no filter lane or gate at all, but this appears to be another one of those ideas that has vanished into the ether.  Although perhaps some councils took it a bit literally and created some boxes without an entrance.

They may have just been the product of the sort of cowboy implementation that is evident in parking places etc... though.

I like the idea of targeting a road to improve filtering on.  Our 'bow roundabout' if you like.  If we can pick a route and get some accident stats it would be interesting.  And then we should start with a little gentle lobbying and see where we end up.

One thing I've noticed is London has been abandoned by the motorcycle lobby groups.  You don't see the cycle lobby get some superhighways and pack up.  No, they keep moaning about them and demanding more and more.  Whereas the merest whiff of a security device seems to have persuade some groups to move onto something else.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Earl Purple on Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:30 am

Cyclists usually ride on the left of the road in moving traffic because they are the slowest vehicles on the road.

However when they are filtering they are not the slowest vehicles, they are the fastest. They are essentially "overtaking". So this should ideally be done on the right. I mentioned that it is better between L1 and L2 (if there are 2 lanes) or between L2 and L3 if there are 3, so they are not riding into oncoming traffic, and also because of the possibility of right-turners.

There are a few places around Camden with cycle filter lanes in the middle, where it belongs.

One TFL road I would like to see modified is the A41 Finchley Road, and only during the morning rush-hour. Instead of 3 lanes each way, I would make it 4 lanes south, 2 lanes north. Northbound would be no-stopping (so no parking or unloading etc) during this time and no bus lane.

Southbound would have: L1 = bus and taxi, with crossover for left turning.
L2 = any vehicle. There will be no right turns off this lane.
L3 = cycles and motorcycles
L4 = any vehicle. No left turns off this lane, right turns permitted at certain points.

Access to L4 from signalled junctions only, although cycles and motorcycles can cross between L2 and L3, and between L3 and L4. There will be some kind of restricted "box" at the junctions where entry to L4 is available so traffic cannot wait across L3 for a gap.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Nelson 1 on Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:08 am

I don't think it is an offense ,you can't be knicked. I read an article in a newspaper a while ago ,and a senior plod was asked why more people weren't done for stopping in the box,and he said it wAsn't actually an offence.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Earl Purple on Wed Jun 19, 2013 7:32 am

There is no offence of stopping in the box, there is only an offence of failing to stop at a red traffic light, which a traffic cop on a motorcycle told me I could be done for (but let me off with a warning).

Not sure if they ever prosecute anyone for that because it is rather "de minimis" or whatever.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  R-dubya on Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:50 pm

I'd imagine it's Boris's recently appointed "Cycling Tsar," Andrew Gilligan, trying to show he's actually doing something to improve things for cyclists in London


As well as being a journalist and writer of a blog (most usually about political matters) he does ride a pushbike.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  R-dubya on Wed Jun 19, 2013 10:06 pm

shaman wrote:In my tour of the cycle lobby on the web, I discovered many of them think the filter lane on the left is dangerous and encourages bad practice amongst cyclists (I agree and I would likely ignore the rule if I was cycling, as it's safety first for me).

There is a fair amount of talking about some 2-3 year old proposals to amend the law so cyclists can just cross the first line and there need be no filter lane or gate at all, but this appears to be another one of those ideas that has vanished into the ether.  Although perhaps some councils took it a bit literally and created some boxes without an entrance.

They may have just been the product of the sort of cowboy implementation that is evident in parking places etc... though.

I like the idea of targeting a road to improve filtering on.  Our 'bow roundabout' if you like.  If we can pick a route and get some accident stats it would be interesting.  And then we should start with a little gentle lobbying and see where we end up.

One thing I've noticed is London has been abandoned by the motorcycle lobby groups.  You don't see the cycle lobby get some superhighways and pack up.  No, they keep moaning about them and demanding more and more.  Whereas the merest whiff of a security device seems to have persuade some groups to move onto something else.


Agree, agree, agree.


If you wanted to know more about Bow Roundabout, check out some of the blog posts made by a guy who goes by the name of 'Diamond Geezer' - http://www.diamondgeezer.blogspot.co.uk/ - and enter 'bow roundabout' in his search box. He's written about it quite a few times, with his thoughts about some of the sticking-plaster fix 'improvements' that were put in place there to improve traffic flow.
I don't actually think he rides a (push)bike but I'd say his view on things is generally 'neutral to pro-cycling,' but with raised empathy towards cyclists when there have been unnecessary and avoidable fatal accidents involving them (Bow Roundabout being a case in point).

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  shaman on Fri Jun 21, 2013 12:25 am

Earl Purple wrote:One TFL road I would like to see modified is the A41 Finchley Road, and only during the morning rush-hour. Instead of 3 lanes each way, I would make it 4 lanes south, 2 lanes north. Northbound would be no-stopping (so no parking or unloading etc) during this time and no bus lane.

Changing lanes part way through the day sounds well confusing

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Earl Purple on Fri Jun 21, 2013 4:33 am

It would not be simple and straightforward to implement.

The obvious thing to do would be close that lane for a short period each time you are going to do the switchover.

It would be an interesting experiment though for maximising road use. (Have a lane change direction dependent on which rush-hour we are in).

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Gordon861 on Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:07 pm

shaman wrote:
Earl Purple wrote:One TFL road I would like to see modified is the A41 Finchley Road, and only during the morning rush-hour. Instead of 3 lanes each way, I would make it 4 lanes south, 2 lanes north. Northbound would be no-stopping (so no parking or unloading etc) during this time and no bus lane.

Changing lanes part way through the day sounds well confusing

It used to be quite a well used solution, when there was much less traffic on the road.

You would have three lanes of traffic, in the morning two lanes were used going into the town and in the evening two lanes were used leaving, during the day the middle lane wasn't used.

I think the road from the A40/M40 junction into Uxbridge used to be like this.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  shaman on Fri Jun 28, 2013 10:34 pm

http://trl.co.uk/online_store/reports_publications/trl_reports/cat_road_user_safety/report_a_track_trial_research_study_on_allowing_motorcycles_use_of_advanced_stop_lines.htm

This report summarises the results of a track trial in which motorcyclists were also permitted to use ASLs at signal-controlled junctions. The study’s objectives were to identify the effects on safety and behaviour, assess the opinions of cyclists and motorcyclists and assist the DfT in establishing whether further work on the concept was appropriate. A four-day trial was carried out on TRL’s test track with 30 participants on each day.

...

The scheme did not delay cyclists getting into the ASL, nor did it reduce the ability of cyclists to reach the ASL. However, the scheme did restrict the ability of some cyclists to stop in the lateral position within the ASL that was considered to be the most appropriate for their planned turn. Observed difficulties were more prevalent when there were large numbers of participants using the ASL, but such situations would only be expected to occur rarely on-street where there are high flows. The scheme did not delay cyclists in leaving the ASL after the start of the Green Phase, but it did reduce the proportion of cyclists who cleared the junction ahead of motorcyclists. Both cyclists (69%) and motorcyclists (92%) were in favour of the scheme. Some of the cyclists expressed difficulties, but these tended to be a minority.

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Re: Proposal to fine cycle box encroachers

Post  Ballistic on Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:39 pm

Most of the cyclist I spoke to actually feel safer if there are bikers in the ASL with them as it increases visibility and prevents car drivers 'bullying' cyclists out of the way.

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