Traffic Lights And Preferences Of Passage For Cyclists

The bikes are vehicles and as such, in absence of Rails specific, must be circular by the booted. But although they are vehicles, have its quirks: it costs them more start than vehicles carrying motor, move at a slower rate…

Can consider that deserve treatment special and that is anime to your use because them externalities of the use of bike, this is, the consequences for third, are in general positive: only can cause problems in your storage, as already know in Amsterdam or Copenhagen. Everything else is good to society: they do not produce noise or gases, contribute to improving the health of its users, in case of accident they cause less damage than motor vehicles, provide a slower in city traffic – and therefore also help to reduce the accident – and if they manage to remove vehicles motor from the cities, also make more fluid traffic.

All super. For that we wrote this blog.

And if we accept that they deserve special treatment, there are signaling and step preferences that take into account the particular nature of bikes. Already applied in France, Germany, Netherlands or part of the United States. Do you want to know what? Continues reading.

Right cycling giro

At a stoplight, in many cities in France, Germany and Belgium riders can continue the March, whether to turn right or go to the front. In some cases indicated with an amber light special, in others with a simple informative panel. Call it spin cyclist on the right, or cedez le passage au feu cycliste.

Is is of a ceda the step: the cyclist not have the priority, but can continue the March if not comes nobody. In practice, it means that you should not expect that the traffic light turns green, if it is not nobody. The rider saves time, saves you having to stop, and can also prevent accidents with heavy goods vehicles at the start of the March.

This measure has sense in many intersections of little traffic and in traffic lights that only seek to allow the step to them pedestrians, in cases without intersection.

Idaho stop

In Idaho are going a step further: since 1982, cyclists can treat all the traffic lights in red or as silks to step, stop signs again avoiding having to stop forcibly. It is called Idaho stop.

Amber traffic lights for cyclists

Zaragoza proposed placing traffic lights of the Paseo Independencia in amber for cyclists, it is exclusively pedestrian crossings, no intersection. A panel with the legend “except cyclists” or one of ceda the step for bicycles could fulfill the same function with less expenditure. It is similar to the previous intervention, but we are unaware if it was implemented. Apparently, the code of the circulation Spanish made difficult the measure.

Is a good idea?

This type of measures has arguments to favor and in against. In favour:

  • Facilitate the circulation to the cyclist, to the avoid that will have that stop by system. As the cyclist tends to go more high that them drivers, its visibility is greater and can that not have need of stop is to check that has the step free, by what not has that assume a problem for its security.
  • To the allow that ahead to the traffic, them cyclists is make more visible and will avoid some accidents with vehicles heavy, that can coil them to the turn.
  • You can assume an time saving and comfort improved remarkably for the cyclist, what fits with the desire to encourage the use of bikes.

In against:

  • This complicates slightly the normative, that always makes it difficult to your application. In addition, if cyclists are somewhat different from the rest of the traffic rules, it may be a little less predictable for the other users.
  • This idea requires a framework legal that it accept and that is a complication administrative.
  • If replaces to a traffic light, was leaves in hands of the cyclist it responsibility of verify that has step free, what can generate accidents in case of cluelessness or negligence.

In France, the standard has been widely verified and there is a Committee to facilitate its implementation. In Idaho, it remains in force, although in other States of the USA (Arizona, Oregon) have not succeeded to bring forward the necessary laws. In Germany or Netherlands applies since the early 1990s.

In Spain, we are waiting the New General Regulation of the circulation to know if it may be applied or not.

You think good idea? To us, Yes. Allow behavior that we’re already seeing in our cities, and our local police usually not sanctioning. And Moreover, it does so without added risks, bicyclist, or pedestrian. And laws must be adapted to the society. Why not? Actually, is not measured face apply, nor have major drawbacks.