An of them functions of the address General of traffic is keep to the day the knowledge and capabilities of them drivers, for what launches each certain time campaigns of soft drink. These Christmas, the DGT has included a brochure in several periodic national that is titled “circulating, them others not always are worse that I”, in which reviewed certain perceptions and actions incorrect. The brochure can download is at VLCNoticias (PDF).
The problem is that in the DGT does not seem to have present the riders. Some ideas are very well, others are controversial and others we seem errors serious. Worse still, to the coming of the DGT, those errors is can magnify by the authority that them gives the logo official.
Cyclists on the sidewalk?
The first, in the front. The cover of the booklet includes a child, accompanied by an adult, going through what looks like a Boulevard, and another adult bicycling across a crosswalk.
The movement of cyclists by sidewalk is much debated. In this blog we think that most beneficial is to create conditions on the road so that you can share, using speed limits and calm traffic, and creating segregated infrastructure (bike lanes) only where required by the differences in speed or intensity of traffic. And believe that by the sidewalk not is can take advantage of the advantages of time of the bike without bother to them pedestrians. So not just to avoid inconvenience to pedestrians, but for the sake of the own riders, what’s good is out to the sidewalk bikes.
The DGT has said one thing and the opposite in successive versions of the future General Regulation of circulation (WCR), which is the document where the position of the DGT and the standard to be applied are set. In a first version that leaked in March 2013, the DGT authorized circulation by sidewalk, gave name to the “aceras-bici” and left at the discretion of municipalities regulation.
But in may 2014, new information was leaked claiming that the DGT would not allow this type of circulation. The thing could be up to funny, if it wasn’t because, meanwhile, councils of Barcelona, Seville and Zaragoza have been involved in battles legal on account of their municipal regulations, or waiting for the final of the WCR wording to get final regulations. And the delays and the trials cost money.
Do across a pedestrian crossing?
On the other hand, cross on bike a step of pedestrian is quite dangerous. The drivers, unless is indicated a rail bike, is expect pedestrians to speed of pedestrian (to 5 Km / h). A bike too fast can be causative of his own hit.
There are who asked us if we do not believe “that cyclists will respect the rules”.
Because they look at: all drivers violate the norms, nor all the riders are going to respect. The cyclists are persons and as such, them there are compliant and not both.
A pedestrian crossing that can circulate cyclists, by very indicated that it is the need to reduce speed or even dismantle the bike, it is an opportunity that the least compliant cyclists “ignore” standard, and therefore cause an accident. And we believe that road infrastructure and regulations should be designed to avoid this kind of “entrapment”. Therefore, allow this kind of crosses us seems dangerous.
If the speed of motor vehicles is pacified, and cross bike is not dangerous because drivers could stop in time, what would be the problem in circular on the road? The question makes sense.
In Vitoria, for example, about 20% of all bicycle accidents reported is produced in steps of pedestrian in the last years.
Pacify the traffic
Not everything is bad: remind us that the reduction of speed in cities reduces mortality. Not is of more repeat it.
Pacify in urban area traffic reduces accidents by 15%
The DGT insists with this topic and in the booklet leaves fall allusions to the helmet.
In what were, DGT?
Eh, as well, and what they want to tell us this? That we should use it? Not is preferable to give advice clear and leave is of encuestitas?
“It recommends” the use of helmet in bicycle.
Ah, OK, that “recommended”. And there is something more about conduct safe? Remember, DGT, that the helmet only serves of something when already it has produced the accident; the safe conduct by bike, on the other hand, can prevent accidents and not only to alleviate them. And we have already said many times that it’s not even too effective as palliative tool.
Tell you something light
“To facilitate mutual respect, it is essential to see and be seen.” Ah, well.
Although a cyclist invisible play life, is a little-respected measure, lights are mandatory and is a factor which does not deter use of bike, the DGT does not consider equally important use of lights to the helmet. Mentions it in passing and does not include it in the 10 outstanding recommendations. And also makes it clear that the lights are mandatory, but it says that it is “important the proper use of lights, blinkers and reflective materials”. Yes, good, as well.
Is it not better to make things clear and leave so much straw? It is crucial to use lights on the bike, because if don’t see a bicyclist, anything can happen. And is also required.
A missed opportunity
In summary, although the idea of cool concepts is positive and some good ideas are included in this brochure, for the behavior of cyclists are a missed opportunity: is not clear anything and adds unnecessary confusion. Diverts attention from the important (position in roadway, use of lights, etc.) towards drawling helmet recommendation.
It worse is it indecision and the swings to the with regard to the circulation by the sidewalk. Perhaps because within the own DGT there is a clear stance in this respect? When the famous General Regulation of circulation will see what there is.