Wednesday 2 March 2011

Pinch points are dangerous and suppress cycling

Pinch point ahead. Note the passing car – someone learning to drive. Well you wouldn’t want to ride a bike on roads like these...

Cycling south along St James’s Street E17 (A1006) today I came to the roundabout at the junction with Markhouse Road. It’s currently being resurfaced.

The A1006 carries a lot of traffic, including lorries. The other week I even saw a Thames Materials lorry on this road (I never realised they came out this far).

Here, the cycle lane fizzles out and cyclists are forced out into the path of overtaking traffic. It’s a murderous, lethal design on such a busy 'A' road. When you have vehicle after vehicle overtaking you it isn’t always possible to move out and take the primary position. Instead you have to rely on a driver coming up behind you braking as you are both forced into a collision course.

There are a number of schools just up the road, in the vicinity of Markhouse Road. If you want to know why so few parents want their children to cycle to school, look no further than lethal infrastructure like this. It would be no surprise at all if one day a cyclist was knocked down and killed here.