Madeira Drive Brighton

Why the Highway Code should protect riding two abreast

If you’ve not heard yet The Highway Code is under review. The proposal is to amend The Highway Code to introduce a hierarchy of road users, clarify pedestrian and cyclist priority, establish safer overtaking.

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/review-of-the-highway-code-to-improve-road-safety-for-cyclists-pedestrians-and-horse-riders

Just imagine that… it would change our roads for cyclists and pedestrians. In my opinion this is way overdue. Over the past 30 years we have gone from 20 million to approaching 40 million cars. Our towns and cities haven’t got any bigger… just fuller. The whole road system is creaking.

Many people believe that roads are paid for by “Road Tax” but that isn’t true. Drivers pay Vehicle Excise Duty based on how polluting your car is. Roads are funded from general taxation. That means you have to pay for them whether you own a car or not. As such readdressing the balance in support of cyclists and pedestrians seems only fair.

Cycling UK have also highlighted rule 66 about riding 2 abreast:

However, one newly proposed rule – the new wording for Rule 66 – didn’t sit quite so easily with some people, particularly in respect of whether, and in what circumstances, cyclists can or should ride two abreast.

The current rule reads: “You should…never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends”. 

There are a number of issues with this wording – most notably that corners of country lanes and narrow roads are some of the most dangerous places for a driver to overtake a cyclist – but moving to single file at exactly this point may encourage them to do just that.

We were therefore initially happy with the proposed new wording, that: 

“[cyclists’ should] ride in single file when drivers wish to overtake and it is safe to let them do so. When riding in larger groups on narrow lanes, it is sometimes safer to ride two abreast”. 

Read the full article here:
https://www.cyclinguk.org/blog/why-highway-code-should-protect-riding-two-abreast

 

I’ve already responded online and I urge you to do the same.

Click here to respond online

Alternatively you can complete a response form and email to HighwayCodeReview2020@dft.gov.uk

Consultation end on 11:59pm on 27 October 2020… so don’t delay.

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