Take Care on London’s Roads

An e-mail I got from TFL…

I am writing to both cyclists and drivers to remind them to take care on London’s roads.

Cyclists are reminded to:

  • Be aware of blind spots all around large vehicles. It’s often safer to hang back
  • Make eye contact with drivers to make sure they have seen you
  • Not ride through red traffic lights. It’s dangerous and you can be fined £30
  • Allow space between you and parked vehicles. Doors may be opened suddenly

No mention of what drivers are reminded to be aware of on the roads. Hopefully a bit of education about cyclists and their needs on the road but that is probably a long shot.

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10 thoughts on “Take Care on London’s Roads

  1. Apparently a separate email was sent to drivers explaining to them the needs of cyclists.

    I don’t think this takes off the slightly patronising edge of Mr. Plowden’s email though.

  2. I dropped him a reply asking where the drivers tips were. After all, I also drive a car and could be missing out…
    Here were some tips I suggested he could use:

    – Don’t ride through red traffic lights and amber does not mean “put your foot down”
    – Hooting your horn at a bike travelling at 20mph is aggressive and discourteous. You’ll only have to wait longer at the next set of lights if you overtake them anyway
    – The advanced stop zone is for bicycles. If you want to use it, get a bike.
    – 12 inches is not the recommended space to leave a bike when passing them. If you can’t pass safely, don’t do it. And yes, it is legal for cycles to ride two abreast.

    No response yet…

  3. I wonder if drivers have been reminded that we need to give parked cars a wide berth and that we cannot hug the gutter then suddenly levitate.

  4. The provincial crown corporation here that insures motor vehicles put out a cycling safety video on YouTube, and while it contained some ok things like “use hand signals”, “stop at the red light”, etc, it also said to never ride outside of the bike lane. It got bombarded with comments from riders saying how wrong that was, and the video was taken down never to be seen again (-:

    • That driver’s email is pretty close to what I sent to Ben Plowden! So it seems TFL are aware of the dangers cyclists face; just hope that it’s the dodgy drivers who read it.

  5. For drivers…

    If you drive in London, please remember to:

    Give cyclists as much room as you would a car when overtaking
    Look out for cyclists when turning – they may be filtering through slower moving traffic
    Check before opening doors on to the roadside
    Keep advanced stop lines free for cyclists at junctions. You can be fined £60 for crossing the advanced stop line at a red light

  6. I think the making eye contact recommendation is a bit rubbish. I find that if I make eye contact with a driver – say someone who is in a side road edging forward to get into the main road – he or she takes that eye contact to mean they can go ahead and shoot out in front of me. They seem to take it to mean “She’s seen me, she’ll slow down”. After a couple of nasty collisions and a few more near misses, I always deliberately look away from drivers coming out of side turnings. That way they seem to think “She’s not seen me, better slow down”. So far so good touch wood.

    As for making eye contact with drivers behind me, I find the drivers’ stares of cool, steely hatred a bit daunting.

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