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Elephant and Castle from the CS7

SquawkSquawk Posts: 132
edited November 2013 in Commuting general
Rant time.

Entry onto the main roundabout from the CS7 has 4 lanes on it. See,+London&hl=en&ll=51.495148,-0.100607&spn=0.001496,0.004128&sll=51.528642,-0.101599&sspn=0.765511,2.113495&oq=elephant&hnear=Elephant+and+Castle,+London,+United+Kingdom&t=h&z=19, it's the A3 coming in from the bottom. Number them 1 on the left, 4 on the right.

The main exit for cyclists is also the A3, top right. After the first exit for the A302 which nobody really takes the roundabout has 4 lanes, again numbered 1-4 left to right.
1. bus lane for going left, not much goes down there.
2. Bus lane, for going up the A3
3 and 4, cars etc.

Everyone coming up the A3 gets in lane 2, sometimes 3. Cars are inevitably in lane 3 and 4, buses pack lane 2 behind the cyclists, lane 1 could be anything and is irrelevant.

And to my rant. All cyclists in lane 2, with hardly any exceptions, enter the roundabout and immediately swerve right into lane 3 on the roundabout. After peddling for 30 yards to where the roundabout starts to bend back to the right, they then swerve back into lane 2 (the bus lane for the A3) and continue on their way.

It's incredibly dangerous, and I see it every single day by nearly every rider. Line up in lane 2, move into lane 3, back into lane 2. Where do they think the car drivers in lane 3 and 4 are going to go if they happen to be going at the same speed? At some point one will get killed.

As a car driver I hate following cyclists onto Elephant as I know they will swerve into the wrong lane. As a cyclist I hate it, because I've had to swerve into lane 3 to avoid the idiot who is doing the same from my left and gives me nowhere to go.

Anyone else notice this/get frustrated by it? If you ride up the CS7 and haven't noticed it, watch tomorrow morning. I'll be the guy on the red Trek in the red jacket with horrid Movember mo, going through at about 8:25.


  • Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't the CS7 turn off at Churchyard Row about 100-200m south of there?

    You're just riding on "normal" roads as normal as the Elephant and Castle roundabout is. I commuted through there for about six months, but now avoid like the plague. As you say.. someone is going to get killed sooner or later, and I would rather it wasn't me.
  • As pointed out above, CS7 has a backstreet route to avoid E&C roundabout.

    On the roundabout itself, everyone (cars, buses, bikes) seems to be in the wrong lane all the time, I'm forever having to keep an eye out for cars swinging out across 3 lanes to exit the roundabout without indicating or looking.
  • SquawkSquawk Posts: 132
    Yeah that's actually true, the CS7 veers off to the left a bit earlier and goes through that estate. I sometimes come from Loughborough Junction (I actually live in Dulwich so have a choice of routes), and just needed a way of explaining entry to the junction.
  • jds_1981jds_1981 Posts: 1,858
    People seem to have problems with multi lane roundabouts, especially in London.
    They never seem to understand which lane to be in. I really don't think it's a car/cyclist thing in this case.,-0.063829&spn=0.000007,0.007446&t=m&z=18&layer=c&cbll=51.589535,-0.063829&panoid=t0uXIvjpjc-P_WKLuCLOxg&cbp=12,115.56,,0,11.76
    Tottenham hale gyratory. 3 Lanes, left one goes left. Always put the willies in me as you'd have cars from all three lanes pulling very dangerous maneuvres to get out to the left junction. I suspect most of the people had driven this way for years.,-0.015796&spn=0.000003,0.003723&t=m&z=19&layer=c&cbll=51.600757,-0.015789&panoid=yO2VKvMtGyIQDKYqq08SIA&cbp=12,187.84,,0,6.92
    My local roundabout (Crooked Billet), this picture shows it well. The google car is in the lane I need to be in for my exit (the second from the picture.) You can see a faint line marker on the road. There should be two lanes of cars to the left of it, those taking the first exit and the ones taking my exit.
    Unfortunately I know that if there's a car to my left, it will try to take a straight line to its exit, which pretty much tkaes them over that line.
    FCN 9 || FCN 5
  • RuddRudd Posts: 264
    I agree entirely with the OP. I always make a point of getting into lane three and staying in it. Sometimes you have to wait a bit because there is often a line of cars ahead of you. its worth it though because it makes your jouney around the roundabout so much safer as you are far less likely to get cut up by cars from the right or buses from the left. You still have keep an eye out for cyclists crossing your path though!

    I come across at about 8.25 too, so if you see blue baggies and a white on-one wih discs you'll know its me!
  • bigmatbigmat Posts: 5,111
    Gyratories are horrible, most of my experience is in London but I imagine they are just as bad elsewhere. I actually prefer them on a bike than in a car as you have more room for manoeuvre. Re E&C, never really had a problem with it on a bike. My lane discipline may not be perfect but my focus is just on getting out of everyone's way and getting across it as quickly as possible.

    Problem with lane 3 (in my experience) is that you invariably get someone in lane 2 - car, motorbike, bus - undertaking you as you attempt to exit. Lane 2 you have muppets on bikes and buses to deal with. Just do whatever is safest at that moment.
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