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Thread: Painted cycle lanes result in more close-passes by drivers, study finds

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    Default Painted cycle lanes result in more close-passes by drivers, study finds

    https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/l...y-finds-422068

    "Dr Beck explained why painted cycle lanes saw an increase in close passes: “When the cyclist and driver share a lane, the driver is required to perform an overtaking manoeuvre.""

    "This is in contrast to roads with a marked bicycle lane, where the driver is not required to overtake."

    “This suggests that there is less of a conscious requirement for drivers to provide additional passing distance.”

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    Something I observe anecdotally every time I ride on the line (to avoid the door zone) on Quincy.

    That study seems to conclude though that segregated infra is needed, but of course, segregated has its own detractors.

    I suppose it should be noted that in the Australian state where the study was carried out, there is no legal passing distance requirement, although I doubt that makes a huge difference.

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    Regarding Quincy and any other bike lane. Regardless of the parked car, standing car, delivery truck, trash can, gravel, jogger, stroller, tourist, zig-zag, bollard, blind spot or door zone that's in the bike lane, if you don't bike in it you are fair game as far as a driver is concerned. It's just a matter of time until the traffic regs are changed to restrict us only to bike lanes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brendan von Buckingham View Post
    Regarding Quincy and any other bike lane. Regardless of the parked car, standing car, delivery truck, trash can, gravel, jogger, stroller, tourist, zig-zag, bollard, blind spot or door zone that's in the bike lane, if you don't bike in it you are fair game as far as a driver is concerned. It's just a matter of time until the traffic regs are changed to restrict us only to bike lanes.
    The only jurisdiction around here that does that is Md, and that law is filled with exceptions, and AFAIK not enforced. Increases in the number of riders, due in part to seg infra, make expansion of such laws unlikely. (edit and the Md law does not apply at all on streets without bike lanes).

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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaCynic View Post
    https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/l...y-finds-422068

    "Dr Beck explained why painted cycle lanes saw an increase in close passes: “When the cyclist and driver share a lane, the driver is required to perform an overtaking manoeuvre.""

    "This is in contrast to roads with a marked bicycle lane, where the driver is not required to overtake."

    “This suggests that there is less of a conscious requirement for drivers to provide additional passing distance.”
    despite this, there are data showing that adding even door zone bike lanes does not detract from safety vs a road without, and that a non door zone conventional bike lane increases safety.

    Possible reasons - 1. while some advocates dismiss the fear of being hit from behind, these kinds of collisions are real. 2. The reality is lots of riders ride on the right side of the road, allowing a driver to pass in lane in a standard width lane, anyway. 3. Convention bike lanes reduce auto speeds 4. maybe this particular study is not generalizable (while many people say it agrees with their personal experience, it does less so with mine - I do see people passing properly when I am in a bike lane, and often passing close when I am taking the lane. In particular the latter is less predictable - I see behavior ranging from going all the way across the yellow line, to just veering over, to the occasional punishment pass. When I am in a bike lane, they won't cross the yellow line, but they will almost never enter the lane - its fairly predictable where they will be.)

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    Here is a bike lane in Melbourne, where the study was done

    https://www.google.com/maps/@-37.776...8i6656!5m1!1e3

    Door zone, not particularly wide, conventional bike lane. Planners and advocates already generally do not consider these optimal.

    Absent them, you would have wider lanes. They are probably there to help calm traffic, for the benefit of all modes, as is often the case in the USA.

    Melbourne seems to separate directions with a white stripe, not a yellow stripe. Does this change driver behavior on streets without bike lanes? Note, in the USA, we distinguish streets with no center stripe from those with a center stripe (and of course some streets have center medians)

    IIUC Au has generally low bike mode share - more like the USA than any other western industrialized country. It may take some doing to get the constituency for mass provision of protected bike lanes there.

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    Here is an earlier paper by the same author, which concludes that conventional bike lanes can reduce crashes in some conditions, but PBLs do so to a greater extent.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30476630

    Note this study looks at number of crashes, not severity, so probably underestimates the benefits of changes to the road that reduce motor vehicle speeds.
    Last edited by lordofthemark; 05-02-2019 at 02:06 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by huskerdont View Post
    Something I observe anecdotally every time I ride on the line (to avoid the door zone) on Quincy.

    That study seems to conclude though that segregated infra is needed, but of course, segregated has its own detractors.

    I suppose it should be noted that in the Australian state where the study was carried out, there is no legal passing distance requirement, although I doubt that makes a huge difference.
    I'd argue that any minimal passing distance rule is pointless as most drivers have no clue as to the size/position of their vehicle in a lane, let alone a relative distance from it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    Here is an earlier paper by the same author, which concludes that conventional bike lanes can reduce crashes in some conditions, but PBLs do so to a greater extent.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30476630

    Note this study looks at number of crashes, not severity, so probably underestimates the benefits of changes to the road that reduce motor vehicle speeds.
    I was surprised to see the authors admit they don't have any data on how many cyclists are using the lanes being studied. Drawing conclusions from the number of crashes without knowing the usage of the lanes is not the best science.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    IIUC Au has generally low bike mode share - more like the USA than any other western industrialized country. It may take some doing to get the constituency for mass provision of protected bike lanes there.
    Melbourne is an absolutely lovely city with tons of bike infrastructure and no hills. It suffers greatly from the state's mandatory helmet law, however. The bike path that follows the Yarra River right into downtown is beautiful.

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