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cycle/pedestrian track

tonecolestonecoles Posts: 33
edited February 2013 in Road beginners
can you advise please,

on some of the roads around me there are cycle/footpaths.some cyclists use them and some use the road (the path/track is pretty rough) where does the law stand on this, do you have to use it if provided or can you use the road instead?

Posts

  • redveeredvee Posts: 11,921
    Rule 61 of the Highway Code states:
    Use cycle routes, advanced stop lines, cycle boxes and toucan crossings unless at the time it is unsafe to do so. Use of these facilities is not compulsory and will depend on your experience and skills, but they can make your journey safer.

    https://www.gov.uk/rules-for-cyclists-5 ... w-59-to-71

    There is also a guideline regarding speed on cyclelanes etc which suggests anything upto 18mph is suitable, over that you should be on the road.
    I've added a signature to prove it is still possible.
  • I have no idea about the law (hopefully someone else will?) but I almost always use the road as its generally much safer, because near me the cycle paths cut across lots of drives and side streets far enough from the road that drivers haven't slowed down enough yet, and have much less time to see cyclists coming. OK if you are going at walking pace but not really safe if you cycle above 10mph...
  • redvee wrote:
    Rule 61 of the Highway Code states:
    Use cycle routes, advanced stop lines, cycle boxes and toucan crossings unless at the time it is unsafe to do so. Use of these facilities is not compulsory and will depend on your experience and skills, but they can make your journey safer.

    https://www.gov.uk/rules-for-cyclists-5 ... w-59-to-71

    There is also a guideline regarding speed on cyclelanes etc which suggests anything upto 18mph is suitable, over that you should be on the road.

    18mph, that would be nice :lol:
  • lotus49lotus49 Posts: 763
    You are not required to use a cycle path instead of a road under any circumstances.

    John Franklin covers this in his excellent book Cyclecraft. Car drivers may not use cycle paths (where they are part of the carriageway, even the most idiotic driver wouldn't attempt to use a fully segregated track) but cyclists are free to choose whether to use them or not entirely at their own discretion.
  • My opinion is, its a ROAD bike.

    Cyclepaths are usually more hazardous than the carriageways, especially with pedestrians thrown into the mix.
    Nothing worse than being stuck behind Auntie Eileen on a curbed cycle path doing 8mph for a mile when you had a good tailwind going.
    Interesting point about being over 18mph as its too fast.
  • sungodsungod Posts: 14,841
    lotus49 wrote:
    <...>even the most idiotic driver wouldn't attempt to use a fully segregated track<...>

    sadly, they do it in london all the time, especially delivery vans :evil:

    but i almost always use the road, in town i'm as fast as or faster than the traffic, the cycle lanes tend to accumulate glass and other censored , and too many pedestrians step into them as if they were extensions of the pavement
    my bike - faster than god's and twice as shiny
  • I think it totally depends on the safety aspect, your speed and preferences.

    There are a couple of cycle paths I use where there is plenty of space for pedestrians and cyclists, though I wish the pedestrians would stick to the pedestrian side of it, clearly marked.

    One I use, partially (alongside the A59 around Ormskirk) fades out to something around 2 feet wide which is bumpy and dangerous so there I get back onto the main road. Further on you have no choice but to use the bumpy, narrow cycle path because the road ends in a very large junction (switch island) which is not safe at all for cyclists.

    Horses for courses. Do what you feel safe and comfortable with.
  • thanks for the replies folks, thats a great help

    tc
  • lotus49 wrote:
    even the most idiotic driver wouldn't attempt to use a fully segregated track
    They make convenient off-road parking area don't they. And no double-yellows, so its fine, right? :roll:
  • stay on the road unless you have MTB tyres fitted - all the censored ends up in the lane and track - even then if you do go properly off-road instead!
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    There was a fuss a few years ago when the DfT tried to include in the Highway Code the phrase 'cyclists should use a cycle path where one exists', as it gave a formal backing to the idea that cyclists shouldn't be on the road and should [not must] use cycle paths instead of the road where possible. It raised questions of what happens in the event of a cyclist being hit by a car when not in a cycle lane, and how much weight should be given to the state of a cycle lane when deciding whether or not to ignore the wording of the HC, and how this might affect any legal and insurance claims arising. In short, can of worms, insisting that cyclists should use cycle paths.

    Sense prevailed and the wording was dropped.
  • Depends where you are though.

    Our cycle/footpaths are just away from the road & most are built above the road level by say 1 curb height so tend to not attract the road debris. However we do have a few that are part road just a simple painted line so are next to useless for the bike unless you fancy practicing your puncture repair skills on a regular basis.
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • lotus49 wrote:
    Car drivers may not use cycle paths (where they are part of the carriageway, even the most idiotic driver wouldn't attempt to use a fully segregated track)

    Yes and no...

    There are cycle 'lanes' and cycle 'ways' or 'paths'. The term cycleway (or cycle path) is associated with a route for pedal cyclists segregated from the carriageway, often by a kerb and may take the form of a shared footway/cycleway, or a segregated footway/cycleway. A cycle lane is provided on the carriageway and is bounded by either a broken white line (an advisory cycle lane) or a solid white line (a mandatory cycle lane) Drivers can cross a broken white line and hence can enter an advisory cycle lane (the official wording is "motor vehicles should not enter a cycle lane unless that lane is clear of pedal cycles"). However drivers cannot cross a solid white line except for in an emergency and hence cannot enter a mandatory cycle lane (the official wording being "...route used by pedal cycles... only").
    Still trying to convince the missus of the n+1 rule...!
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    There are cycle 'lanes' and cycle 'ways' or 'paths'. The term cycleway (or cycle path) is associated with a route for pedal cyclists segregated from the carriageway, often by a kerb and may take the form of a shared footway/cycleway, or a segregated footway/cycleway. A cycle lane is provided on the carriageway and is bounded by either a broken white line (an advisory cycle lane) or a solid white line (a mandatory cycle lane) Drivers can cross a broken white line and hence can enter an advisory cycle lane (the official wording is "motor vehicles should not enter a cycle lane unless that lane is clear of pedal cycles"). However drivers cannot cross a solid white line except for in an emergency and hence cannot enter a mandatory cycle lane (the official wording being "...route used by pedal cycles... only").

    Thats interesting - thanks ...

    Do you know what the taxi drivers are supposed to do when picking up/dropping off where there is a cyclelane with solid white line?
    I only ask because I had one taxi driver overtake and pull in front of me whilst I was in one and the other issue we have is with cars that park in these lanes ...
  • I've done a bit more digging and found that "taxis are normally allowed to stop within cycle lanes to drop-off or pick-up passengers". This was from a Transport for London document "London Cycling Design Standards". The Highway Code section 140 states "you must not drive or park in a cycle lane marked by a solid white line..." and refers you to the Road Traffic Regulation Act Sectons 5 & 8. These may have since been replaced by the Traffic Management Act 2004 which may include details of the exemption for taxis, but I'm afraid I've not got a copy here.

    Of course, being able to stop does not mean the remainder of the Highway Code doesn't apply!

    Hope that helps :)
    Still trying to convince the missus of the n+1 rule...!
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