Blouse dress traffic – effortless style
Blouse dress traffic – effortless style
A: don’t live in the suburbia death trap
B: don’t drive if you deal with a rush hour
This is in Glasgow – or more accurately Bearsden outside Glasgow … love it. more here
A delegation of Scottish transport chiefs are to visit the Netherlands to find out how Dutch roundabouts make roads safer for cyclists.
Dutch roundabouts feature segregated cycle lanes around the outside, making them much more cycle-friendly, particularly important as two-thirds of bike collisions happen at junctions.
Last week Transport for London announced it was investing £2 million in a project to introduce Dutch roundabouts in the city.
Keith Brown, Scotland’s transport minister who is among those travelling to Amsterdam, told the Scotsman that rather than try to come up with their own innovations, they would borrow successful design from around the world.
“We have an ambitious vision to promote cycling but there is no need to re-invent the wheel and I am keen that we learn from the experiences of our neighbours”, he told Scotland on Sunday.
“I am very much looking forward to finding out about the different approaches taken in the Netherlands regarding cycling infrastructure and other softer measures.
“It will also be interesting to see how the Transport for London research into junction and roundabout layouts develops.
“I am supportive of any improvements that Scottish planning authorities and local roads authorities can implement to make our roads a safer place to cycle.”
Ian Aitken, chief executive of Cycling Scotland, the national bike promotion body, said: “The Dutch-style roundabouts that are now being implemented in London would be very welcome in Scotland because they make conditions safer for cyclists at junctions, which is where 68 per cent of all accidents involving cyclists occur,” he said.
“These roundabouts not only give cyclists priority at a junction, they are also more effective at encouraging motorists to slow down, as they only have a single lane for entry and exit.”
Fixie Rider checklist
1. Cool Glasses
2. One gear no idea
3. no brakes
4. Card in spoke
5. Courier bag as narrow as your bars ….. ooops messed up there …..
Bikes are different than cars: bikes have only two wheels; bikes are smaller and travel at slower speeds; people who ride bikes (cyclists) are not required to be a certain minimum age, pass a test, have a license, or register or insure their bicycles; there are no laws regulating the training of cyclists as there are for motorists. So why should cyclists be held to the same standards on their bikes as motorists in their cars? Why should cyclists be subject to the same traffic laws and fines for violations?
Part of the answer to the second question can be found by considering the relevant similarity between bikes and cars: it is legal to operate both bikes and cars on many of the same streets. If cyclists did not have to obey traffic laws, whenever a bike and car approached an intersection, the car would have to stop in order to avoid hitting the bike, even if the car had a green light. By stopping at the green light, while (importantly) sparing the cyclist, the motorist contradicts and thereby undermines the system of meaning that traffic signals are intended to convey. So in order to prevent corrosion of the traffic signal system and subsequent chaos, cyclists should follow the same traffic laws as motorists.
Given that cyclists should obey the same traffic laws as motorists, should they be subject to the same fines? This is where things start to get complicated.
On the one hand, there is the idea of proportionality: the more severe the infraction, the more severe the sanction – in this case, the worse the violation, the higher the fine. Are traffic violations worse in a car than on a bike? In terms of the potential harm inflicted on others, yes, they are. Consider driving and biking the wrong way down a one way street: both are dangerous, but intuitively, the motorist is doing something far more dangerous, and therefore worse, than the cyclist. In principle, however, it’s not clear that one is worse than the other. As discussed above, cyclists should follow the same traffic laws as motorists in order to uphold a system that is supposed to enable road users to predict each other’s behaviour. In light of this system, all violations, whether by car or bike, are equally bad and therefore should incur the same fine.
On the other hand, there is the idea of deterrent: the higher the fine for a violation, the greater risk associated with it, the less likely it is to occur. It may be that bike fines are currently so low that they do not sufficiently discourage violations. For example, in Boston, a cyclist may be fined $20 for most traffic offenses; there is a proposal to raise this to $150 in an attempt to reduce bike traffic violations. In order to be an effective deterrent, however, the cyclist’s fine need not be as high as the motorist’s. Presumably, there is some threshold amount, say $50, that would stop most cyclists (and, for that matter, motorists) wantonly flouting traffic regulations. Any amount the over the threshold is not a deterrent, but a punishment. As discussed above, there is at least some reason to think that it is worse to commit traffic offenses in a car than on a bike; so there is some reason for motorists to pay higher fines than cyclists. Perhaps cyclists should pay higher fines than they currently do for violating traffic laws, but not necessarily the same fines as motorists.
There is a lot more that could be said on this subject.
What do you think about it?
Do you think cyclists and motorists should follow the same laws?
Do you think they should pay the same fines?
I’d love to hear your thoughts!