My pet hate


If cyclists treated car lanes the same way that cars treat cycle lanes then…

… that would make us just as inconsiderate as those motorists we have chosen not to become.

But it still annoys me when cars obscure cycle paths as if they simply did not exist. I know motorists are allowed to park on many paths after hours, but that doesn’t make it right. In many cases, these obstructions occur in dangerous places, forcing cyclists to move into fast-moving traffic.

Hammersmith Road, near Olympia, here in West London, is a case in point. Every night at 6.30pm (and sometimes earlier) the cars start parking up along the cycle path. And if that wasn’t bad enough, you have to watch out for car doors being flung open right in front of you too!

7 thoughts on “My pet hate

  1. Maybe you should create a bunch of leaflets, that look like parking tickets, that you can slip under windscreen wipers.
    Let the drivers know that you don’t appreciate them being so inconsiderate and that you’ve recorded their registration details. Tell them if it happens again they’ll be reported.


  2. Another reason I refrain from relying on bike lanes.
    Incidentally, if the bicycle symbol was removed completely and that area just had the “official” status of road shoulder (which is basically all it is), I expect you’d find fewer people parking there. That seems to be the experience on this side of the world.


  3. Rodney, good idea — although these cars aren’t breaking the law. In this part of London parking regulations say you can park on cycle lanes after 6.30pm.
    Chris L, good point. Only carefully thought out and properly planned cycle lanes are very good — the ones that are hastily drawn up to meet some kind of environmental/look-what-we’re-doing-for-cyclists kind of objective never seem to work. Personally, I feel they should change the law so that cycle lanes are treated with the same respect accorded to bus lanes: you’d be lynched if you parked in a bus lane!!


  4. Glad to see someone else has had enough of this. I live in West Ealing near Boston Manor road, which has the type of cycle lane that angles out to run along the outside of parked cars which works great, but every single day, at ALL TIMES of the day there are cars parked square across these critical angled sections. This forces riders straight out in front of the traffic, slows the traffic, and is SO dangerous. How are these cars not given tickets for this? I am writing to Ealing council, with photos of these vehicles and the times of the day that they were there. If Ealing council do not reply to me I will very soon be using document enclosed wallets and attaching my own “FIXED A**HOLE NOTICE” to each and every car windscreen i see parked over these angled sections. And i will tell the council that i will do it. If i stick enough of them on these cars then the local press will find out, and then i will annonymously tell them that Ealing Council did nothing to prevent it, even though it is illegal for these vehicles to be parked there before 18.30


  5. I agree with all the points made above. Unfortunately as enforcement of road safety law in this country is so poor (that is unless it has some fiscal benefit for the authorities) i fear inconsiderate drivers will continue to do this sort of thing. A great deal of drivers just do not care for the safety of cyclists. I suggest that if you are riding down the cycle lane and you come across a car parked like this that you take off your front wheel, get it nice and muddy and roll it from the boot to the bonnet. That will give them something to think about when they return !


  6. Yes Tofthead. Very good idea. I am glad people like you are thinking of ways to make motorists realise what they are doing. I have since found out that green cycle lanes are called ‘mandatory cycle lanes’ and are supposed to be illegal to park in at any time. They are a designated part of the highway. Any cycle lanes which are’nt green are advisory lanes which basically means they are car parking spaces for cars. We can’t do anything about that, but WE CAN do something about the green ones. Any motorist knows that in London wherever they go they can get a ticket just like that, for next to no reason. So HOW then are cars parked all day everyday in the critical angled (illegal to park in) green cycle lanes on Boston Manor road?
    I beleive that is neglect on the part of Ealing Council. If their wardens went down there they could have a field day with tickets. Come on warden jobsworths. Do your bloody jobs!


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