Ride to the line in cycle lanes – advice

Cyclists are being urged to ride just to the left of the line in cycle lanes to cut down on the number of dangerous close shaves by over-taking vehicles.

Oxfordshire County Council’s cycle champion, Councillor Suzanne Bartington said: “Research shows that riders in Oxford experience a close pass for every 12 miles travelled.

“This chimes with national figures of a close pass for every hour of cycling, regardless whether riders are wearing hi-visibility clothing.

“Cycling to the line has a two-fold benefit. Cyclists avoid hazards like drain covers that might cause a wobble and motorists are more likely to give them a wider berth.”

Andy Ford, Road Safety Manager at the county council’s Fire and Rescue Service said: “Cyclists have as much right to be on the road as cars and to travel safely.

“We all share responsibility for taking care of each other on the road. Those of us inside vehicles can sometimes forget how vulnerable cyclists are, particularly if they aren’t confident, experienced riders.

“How would you feel if a cyclist fell off their bike just as you passed, would you regret not allowing enough space to avoid hitting them?

“The key piece of guidance about passing cyclists is you should give them at least as much room as you would do when overtaking a car. At a minimum, the passing space needed is 1.5 metres.

“Highway Code Rule 163 tells drivers to give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car.”

Thames Valley Police plain clothes officers on cycles are continuing to monitor close passers in Oxford and will pull over and educate any drivers who get too close.