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Cyclist despairs as Amazon van driver takes cycle lane shortcut before parking on pavement; "Felt like a monkey humping a cricket ball": Richie Porte tries swimming; A magical road for your cycling bucket list; Fake website warning + more on the live blog

It's Thursday and Dan Alexander is in the hot seat for all your live blog needs...
24 November 2022, 10:37
Cyclist despairs as Amazon van driver takes cycle lane shortcut before parking on pavement

Perhaps we need more of these... 

A cyclist in Dublin found their journey along one of the city's cycle lanes blocked by an Amazon delivery driver who'd "have attempted to drive in to the building if the door had been a little wider"...

We'll get in touch with Amazon to see if this sort of behaviour flies with them, but from our first glance we'd say there might be three separate issues here:

1. The conduct of individual road users.

2. The suitability of certain vehicles for making deliveries. Should we wonder why hulking great vans are the vehicle of choice for delivering parcels? I guess you can shove more drop offs in a larger vehicle, but shouldn't it matter how they arrive on our doorsteps?

3. Without making excuses... the Christmas period is nearing and with the explosion of online shopping since lockdown, is there too much pressure on delivery drivers?

Anyway that's enough of my ranting...(feel free to continue it or chip in with your own thoughts in the comments)... is the standard of driving from couriers, in your experience, generally better, worse or similar to other road users?

In the meantime here's some extra reading courtesy of eBikeTips... Amazon aiming for a million e-cargo bike deliveries a year from new London micro-mobility hub. 

24 November 2022, 17:45
The results are in...
Poll result 24/11/22

 

24 November 2022, 16:56
Pollution AND traffic down in surrounding areas to London LTNs, research shows
Crystal Palace LTN (YouTube)

More LTN news as promised...

The BBC has reported research from Imperial College London which shows a reduction in pollution and traffic in three LTNs in Islington and their surrounding boundary roads.

The study found that concentrations of nitrogen dioxide fell by 5.7 per cent within the LTNs and by just under 9 per cent on their boundaries, compared to the control sites.

It also showed that traffic dropped by half within the area covered by the schemes, and by 13 per cent at the boundaries.

A spokesperson for Sustrans said the research shows "the fundamental benefit low-traffic neighbourhoods can have in improving air quality for communities".

"This should be considered alongside the role LTNs play in creating safer spaces for children, increasing footfall for local businesses, and providing an opportunity for people to travel actively instead of being car-dependent," the comment continued.

"However, we must remember that for these schemes to be successful and for everyone, community consultation is essential throughout the planning, delivery and review process. Just as with this research, further evaluation should be a constant, to make sure it continues to work for everyone.

"We should be aiming to replace our car use with walking, wheeling and cycling as a priority, as it is the number of cars on the roads that is the greatest threat to our environment, whilst our overuse of them is unaffordable for our health and wallets."

24 November 2022, 15:55
"Ignore false claims and bad journalism – most LTNs do reduce traffic"
LTN planters

As a few of you have pointed out in the comments and by email the Guardian had the following piece by Boris Johnson's former No.10 transport adviser Andrew Gilligan in today's paper...

> Ignore false claims and bad journalism – most LTNs do reduce traffic

Well worth a read, but a few lines worth highlighting from the off:

"I'm starting to wonder if anyone is ever going to make an honest argument against cycling and walking infrastructure again."

Addressing an article in the Times recently that claimed "councils that implemented LTNs during the pandemic have seen bigger increases in car use than boroughs that did not"... Gilligan responded...again, some highlights...

Oxford LTN (Oxford City Council)

"The article cites no evidence, again perhaps because the evidence says something quite different."

"The article gets one thing right: overall average bus speeds across London have indeed fallen. But here’s what it leaves out. That decline is largely due to huge drops in outer boroughs with no meaningful bike infrastructure at all. Bromley and Havering, for instance, have seen bus speeds fall by up to 6.3% since 2013."

"It is very telling that opponents so often have to mislead to make their case. But that doesn't mean it's not effective. And if left unchallenged, it can enter the political bloodstream.

"So what active travel now needs is a network of people to scrutinise, swiftly unpick and publicly rebut false claims and bad journalism – and to complain to the offenders, who tend to be the same few people. That has been rather effective in reducing propaganda campaigns on other subjects, and making news outlets think twice before publishing slanted stories. How about it, folks?"

More on LTNs in a second...

24 November 2022, 15:37
If the World Cup was pro cycling... (Belgium 1-0 Canada)
Belgium v Canada World Cup as pro cycling (Procyclingstats)

I'm going to level with you, I'm having a tough job finding Portugal vs Ghana, Uruguay vs South Korea or Cameroon vs Switzerland despite Procyclingstats' best help...

24 November 2022, 15:20
Wout van Aert targets a "big fish" in 2023

Like me walking to the chippy, Wout van Aert is after a big fish, turns out me and him are quite similar after all...

Admittedly Wout's doesn't come with mushy peas, chips and gravy... unless they've changed the prizes at Roubaix or Flanders without telling us.

Tour de France 2022 stage 5 Wout van Aert (Pauline_Ballet)

[📷:  ASO/Pauline Ballet]

"Maybe next year I will collect fewer top 10 places, but I will catch that big fish," Van Aert said of his chances in 2023 before stressing a big victory for new arrival and reigning Roubaix champ Dylan van Baarle would matter just as much as one of his own.

2022 Paris-Roubaix Pinarello Dogma F Dylan van Baarle ZacWilliams-SWPix.com - 4.jpeg

[📷: Zac Williams/SWpix.com]

"It's just important that someone from our team wins," he continued. "That may sound a bit corny, but that’s just the way it is. A team can never be too strong and I am really looking forward to racing together with him. I think we are very complementary."

And the team's whole classics line-up spent this week in Flanders plotting the 2023 battleplan...

 
24 November 2022, 15:11
Nearly more swimming content...

Just don't take Richie Porte's advice, road.cc Simon...

24 November 2022, 14:38
Is putting your bike upside down a crime? (POLL)

Liam and Jamie have a few people rattled because of this still from their real-world wheel test...

> Are expensive carbon road bike wheels worth the money?

Thankfully someone's written a piece on this for us before (check the author for a plot twist)...

> Is putting your bike upside down wrong? 

At the time that was written 67 per cent of you said there's nothing wrong with it, but people clearly change their mind on things as time passes... so it's time for another poll!

Create a Poll

24 November 2022, 12:56
Hundreds pay respects to Brian Robinson

Full story: "Without Brian Robinson, there's no Bradley Wiggins or Mark Cavendish": Hundreds pay their respects at funeral of pioneering British cyclist 

24 November 2022, 12:31
"Felt like a monkey humping a cricket ball": Richie Porte tries swimming

This is up there with Elisa Longho Borghini's exasperated "after that, I don't know what there is. Probably only death" having seen Mathieu van der Poel eating spaghetti with ketchup in my hierarchy of pro cyclist quotes...

 

Richie Porte has tried swimming to attack the post-retirement dad bod... from the description I'm not sure it went very well...

"Felt like a monkey humping a cricket ball"

Cheers for that image, Richie...

24 November 2022, 09:28
DMR warns of fraudulent website using its logo
24 November 2022, 09:04
Another magical road for your cycling bucket list

As if we needed another excuse to go ride our bikes in France...

Well, now we have one. Introducing the Grotte du Mas d'Azil in the Ariège in France. The cave carved by the Arize River has a road through it and has even hosted the Tour de France...

The nearest city is Toulouse and it's around 30km west of Foix...

Grotte du Mas d'Azil (Google Maps)

As a rule for research if a road has a profile on the Dangerous Roads website, it's usually going to be fairly interesting, with a few hairpins or novelty features. The site doesn't seem to take into account the main danger of cycling on roads... I'll let you work that one out... so anywhere deemed too dangerous for many to drive may well even end up safer.

Anyway, tangent over, this one doesn't seem too bad by Dangerous Roads' usual fare of South American dirt track mountain passes, and is instead just 420m long with a decent surface, lighting throughout and a 30km/h speed limit. Apparently it's also the only cave in Europe that can be crossed by car, we assume there's at least a couple more that can be done by bike...

Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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77 comments

Avatar
Andywham | 1 year ago
1 like

The Grotte du Mas d'Azil is NOT the only cave in Europe with a road through it. We have one in Asturias - La Cuevona, near Ribadesella.

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jackseph | 1 year ago
0 likes

33 minutes for a 2k swim is much better than most could do. I think Richie is being a bit hard on himself.

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Hirsute | 1 year ago
1 like

Twitter again
https://mobile.twitter.com/ian_m_greenwood/status/1595011380981243905
Survey on road safety.
Supply answers in one or three words.

Cyclists, cyclists, cyclists.

Avatar
Hirsute | 1 year ago
5 likes

One for wtjs and his love of all things BMW

https://youtu.be/7yfnYz76KEE?t=153

 

 

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hawkinspeter replied to Hirsute | 1 year ago
2 likes

hirsute wrote:

One for wtjs and his love of all things BMW

https://youtu.be/7yfnYz76KEE?t=153

//cdn.road.cc/sites/default/files/styles/main_width/public/bmwrf.png)

That picture should have David Attenborough narrating:

Here we see the adult BMW stopping at the watering hole - a quick break before it goes hunting for prey again

Avatar
nosferatu1001 | 1 year ago
1 like

another road rage incident - and all for filtering last stationary traffic it seems 

 

https://www.hamhigh.co.uk/news/23146360.appeal-motorist-rams-cyclist-hor...

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eburtthebike replied to nosferatu1001 | 1 year ago
2 likes

nosferatu1001 wrote:

another road rage incident - and all for filtering last stationary traffic it seems 

 

https://www.hamhigh.co.uk/news/23146360.appeal-motorist-rams-cyclist-hor...

SFB, incredible.  The very fact that drivers think that they can do this and get away with it is a complete condemnation of road law and enforcement.

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Pyro Tim | 1 year ago
1 like

Be careful out there folks. Odd that a cyclist is using the SMIDSY defence, but here it is

https://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/23147462.cyclist-found-guilty-rid...

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CyclingGardener replied to Pyro Tim | 1 year ago
2 likes

Ok, so motorbike had priority, but as both had a green light, not an 'absolute' offence, but rather a 'misjudgement'. In which case it seems odd that the biker's speed wasn't considered an issue. The cyclist knew the route well and so presumably knew how much time he would have with an oncoming vehicle at or below the limit. Had this been a pedestrian crossing a main road they were very familiar with, and getting hit by a speeding biker, I think we'd all hope that speed would be seen as a factor. Similarly if it had been the cyclist who came off worst . . . Or have I missed something?

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HoarseMann replied to CyclingGardener | 1 year ago
1 like

I thought it was very odd that the speed of the motorcycle could not be taken into account. On a dark December morning you can understand misjudgment of a looming headlight when that vehicle was travelling way above the legal limit (never mind what might be appropriate for the conditions). That excessive speed likely to be a major factor in the sad fatality too.

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Moist von Lipwig | 1 year ago
5 likes

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-63723215

bbc now on the zebra crossing story - with a bit more local resident background.

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Cycloid | 1 year ago
2 likes

20 mph Speed Limits Don't Make Sense

In Tuesday's edition of the i Newspaper Paul Biggs of the Alliance of British Drivers made a case against 20mph speed limits.
https://inews.co.uk/opinion/why-20mph-speed-limits-dont-make-sense-1978936
I found the article to be a terrible piece of journalism and not up to the standard I eaxpect from the i, but on reading it again I found that he was using some of the techniques I use when arguing against mandatory helmet and hi vis use for cyclists. 
He selectively quoted from various publications, some of which were very credible but then used his own twisted logic to put a false interpretation on them. He also managed to contradict himself within the same paragraph. He did all this while trying to appear to be a reasonable and safety concious motorist.
Are we as cyclists as guilty as him?
 

Avatar
The Accountant replied to Cycloid | 1 year ago
1 like

If you want a more coherent argument against 20mph speed limits and the way they are dealt with, I suggest you read the recent Telegraph article at https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/11/19/handing-councils-power-fine-...

In it, top lawyer and road safety campaigner Nick Freeman makes the cogent point that raising money through fines will not work, as wealthier motorists are only really bothered about points on their licence.

Labour-run local authority Wandsworth is adopting this framework, which will effective decriminalise speeding.

Mr Freeman has long campaigned for stricter road laws, and is an advocate of adding more accountability in cycling to increase its safety.

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Cycloid replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
14 likes

Fuck off

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Flintshire Boy replied to Cycloid | 1 year ago
0 likes

.

Ah, ya have a convincing way with words, to be sure.

.

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Hirsute replied to Flintshire Boy | 1 year ago
2 likes

Try reading the room.

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brooksby replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
13 likes

Rakia wrote:

In it, top lawyer and road safety campaigner Nick Freeman makes the cogent point that... /snip

Nigel - is that you?  

 

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lesterama replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
14 likes

If you want a less coherent argument against anything related to cycling, I suggest you read Rakia's posts.

In them, top troll and anti-progressive campaigner Rakia makes the cogent point that he is Nigel Garage.

Rakia has long campaigned for nothing, and is an advocate of adding more unaccountability in commenting to increase its covfefe.

@road.cc, how many times does someone need to get banned from this site before they get a life elsewhere?

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a1white replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
7 likes

Rakia wrote:

road safety campaigner Nick Freeman

Avatar
The Accountant replied to a1white | 1 year ago
0 likes
a1white wrote:

Rakia wrote:

road safety campaigner Nick Freeman

Don't see what's so funny about it, his wikipedia page says the same - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Freeman

Avatar
Steve K replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
14 likes

Rakia wrote:
a1white wrote:

Rakia wrote:

road safety campaigner Nick Freeman

Don't see what's so funny about it, his wikipedia page says the same - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Freeman

Only because you wrote it, BOOBOOBEAKER

Avatar
Cycloid replied to Steve K | 1 year ago
10 likes

Time to bring out my (least) favourite Nick Freeman (top lawyer and road safety campaigner) story.

Freeman who happens to be Jewish was defending a speeding , phone using driver who had killed a pedestrian on a crossing.
He claimed that the pedestrian (a Rabbi) should have been wearing hiviz, as his traditional black suit camoflaged him.
https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/nic...
How low can you go

Avatar
IanMSpencer replied to Steve K | 1 year ago
1 like

FWIW his underlying source is a glossy magazine hagiography, so easily reverted on that basis of an unreliable source - indeed the underlying source of the claim is probably Loophole himself. No doubt that crap will end up being used on the BBC shortly.

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HoarseMann replied to Steve K | 1 year ago
1 like

Steve K wrote:

Rakia wrote:
a1white wrote:

Rakia wrote:

road safety campaigner Nick Freeman

Don't see what's so funny about it, his wikipedia page says the same - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Freeman

Only because you wrote it, BOOBOOBEAKER

So he did! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:MobileDiff/1123182267

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
14 likes

Ooh look, Booboobeaker is unbanned on Wiki and now making sudden changes to Nick Freemans account, which is then referenced by Rakia a day or two later. What a fucking coincidence. 

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a1white replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 1 year ago
7 likes

Looks like he got into trouble for disruptive behaviour on Cyclingmikey's Wiki entry, getting into a bit of a spat for saying Mikey had been aggresive. He even crticises the Wiki article for quoting Road.cc saying it is "poorly sourced". Sounds exactly like Rakia doesn't it? 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Smartse (do a search for Booboobeaker on the page)

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perce replied to The Accountant | 1 year ago
9 likes

Years ago I worked with a guy whose surname was Rotherham. Every time he answered the phone he would say '' my name is Rotherham. As in the town Rotherham''. Every single time. Drove me nuts. And that old woman that used to say '' my niece got me this chair from Shackletons you know''. She drove me nuts too. Not one of Ridley Scott's finest. Actually I don't think it was him. Sorry.

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chrisonabike replied to perce | 1 year ago
6 likes

That's wonderful.  It reminds me of an anecdote about the laird of Rattray, I think it was.  Stopped by a non-local police on his way from the big house to the village (such as it is). "Where are you going to, sir?"  "Rattray".  "And where are you coming from today, sir?" "Rattray".  "Right, what's your name?" "Rattray". "Get in the van".

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hawkinspeter replied to chrisonabike | 1 year ago
3 likes

chrisonatrike wrote:

That's wonderful.  It reminds me of an anecdote about the laird of Rattray, I think it was.  Stopped by a non-local police on his way from the big house to the village (such as it is). "Where are you going to, sir?"  "Rattray".  "And where are you coming from today, sir?" "Rattray".  "Right, what's your name?" "Rattray". "Get in the van".

Reminds me of Police Squad

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFhpctuUwb4

Avatar
brooksby replied to perce | 1 year ago
3 likes

perce wrote:

Years ago I worked with a guy whose surname was Rotherham. Every time he answered the phone he would say '' my name is Rotherham. As in the town Rotherham''. Every single time. Drove me nuts. And that old woman that used to say '' my niece got me this chair from Shackletons you know''. She drove me nuts too. Not one of Ridley Scott's finest. Actually I don't think it was him. Sorry.

I seem to recall that my gran did have a chair from Shackletons 

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