The Highway Code

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by smithid, 14 Apr 2010.

  1. smithid

    smithid New Member

    Apologies if you have had this debate before but I am a newbie here. What views do people hold about cyclists following the Highway Code or at least what I was taught on my cycling proficiency many many years ago. I have observed cyclists in London for a few weeks and I have seen no hand signals only a look over the shoulder that is supposed to suggest "look out I am about to change direction" ;bikes speeding through ped crossings when the little green man is in full view and also speeding through red lights and trying to avoid the traffic that clearly has a right of way going in the other direction.

    Doesn't this just give cyclists in general a bad rep?
     
  2. hackbike 666

    hackbike 666 Guest

    Yeah and stopping past the stop line at lights is a shootable offence bud.
     
  3. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    Location:
    Bristol
    Naughty naughty HB!:biggrin:

    Sometimes there are situations where it may be safer not to signal such as approaching a junction and a car coming the opposite way is waiting to turn right down the same road.

    Also we don't always see all the look behinds that cyclists make ... I have 3 levels of look behind:
    1. Glance -Just to know vaguely whats behind
    2. Small look - about to signal perhaps or turn left
    3. Good look backwards- intending to move out to the right, looking for a good space.

    It depends on how much information you need to take in in that look.

    Also since I hit a pot hole whilst signalling and broke my arm last year I'm a little more cautious about signalling where the road surface is bad.
     
  4. hackbike 666

    hackbike 666 Guest

    Sorry I just couldn't help it.:sad:
     
  5. StuartG

    StuartG slower but further

    Location:
    SE London
    Remember the HC is mostly a guideline on things you should do. Its mostly very sensible and good commonsense and most sensible people would want to follow it most of the time. The mandatory stuff usually has the word MUST in the sentence and that is the law and should be obeyed.

    There are IMHO only two exceptions:

    The first is that safety is even more important than the law and should take precedence when the two are in conflict (as was the case in lighting for many a year). However that should not be done lightly and be arguable as a mitigating factor in a court of law.

    The second is when nobody is looking or be affected. I don't stop at controlled pedestrian crossings when no one is capable of crossing or other road user would be confused/annoyed by the action. Causing annoyance just gets us all a bad name. Also there is no point in signalling if there isn't anybody to signal to. Safer to keep both hands on the bars.
     
  6. This is a good point. People forget that if you're signalling on a bike, your hand is a long way from the brake lever. On a roundabout this can make a big difference. I signal my intent on roundabouts by road positioning, backed up by brief hand signals if it's safe.
     
  7. BSA

    BSA Senior Member

    Location:
    Sheffield
    Also if you are on a steep descent and want to turn right, this can be tricky.
     
  8. Trevrev

    Trevrev Veteran

    Location:
    Southampton
    That has made me chuckle.....LOL.
     
  9. gaz

    gaz Cycle Camera TV

    Location:
    South Croydon
    4. The racers look down - whilst in the drops pointing your head down lets you look behind you between your arm and your body. not a perfect look behind but great to see how close someone is behind you.
     
  10. Alien8

    Alien8 Senior Moment

    My cycling highway code (in decreasing order of priority):

    1) My safety
    2) Everybody else's safety
    3) My convenience
    4) Everybody else's convenience
     
  11. Matthames

    Matthames Über Member

    Location:
    East Sussex
    Also the mandatory stuff is also backed up by the relevant legislation. For example:

    and relevant bit of legislation:

    The RTA has a section on the highway code.

     
  12. thomas

    thomas the tank engine

    Location:
    Woking/Norwich
    Not saying sensible, but the highway code certainly makes it clear that you should try to anticipate what cyclists will do...and if they look over their shoulder that is a good sign they are going to manoeuvre out.
     
  13. dondare

    dondare Über Member

    Location:
    London
    Some ofthe Highway Code is The Law.
    Some of it is "wouldn't it be nice if people were more careful and considerate".
    Some of it is crap.
     
  14. dondare

    dondare Über Member

    Location:
    London
    This bit, for instance:
    Cycle Routes and Other Facilities. 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.
     
  15. OP
    OP
    smithid

    smithid New Member

    I completely agree with the comments that have been made. However, I saw another example this morning where a female cyclists didn't even slow down for the ped crossing and just swerved through the crowd of people trying to cross the road just missing a couple of people. That's the sort of behaviour that makes me cross. 3 other cyclists waited patiently until the people had gone and then moved off.
     
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