Alex Bowden June 28 2017
British Cycling’s Turning the Corner campaign is calling for a universal rule to give way when turning to reduce the risk of cyclists and pedestrians falling victim to left hooks. The organisation has recently commissioned research which revealed that such a move could also reduce motor traffic queue lengths by 43 per cent.
The UK is one of just three countries in the world which does not have a priority rule at traffic light junctions. As part of its campaign, British Cycling asked transport planners Phil Jones Associates to model the impact of the change at the Lea Bridge Road/Orient Way junction in Waltham Forest, Greater London.
Their research found that the change would reduce the amount of time all road users spent navigating a typical set of traffic lights. Queue reductions were largely attributed to a move from a three-stage traffic light sequence – where one phase is for pedestrians and cyclists – to a two stage sequence, where pedestrians, cyclists and motor vehicles can all go at the same time.
British Cycling’s policy adviser, Chris Boardman, said: “Simple changes to the Highway Code and regulations would not only make junctions safer spaces for all road users, it would also make them much more efficient, saving lots of time. The time saved at this single junction amounts to around six hours every year for regular car commuters – that’s a whole season of Line of Duty – and would reduce exhaust emissions by 17 per cent.