Last Friday we published an article discussing how BSM and the AA Driving School are both planning on introducing training for learner drivers so that they respect cyclists and have more respect for other road users. Now, it has been announced that Transport for London are planning on introducing more CCTV cameras across the capital in order to catch motorists who enter Advanced Stop Lanes at traffic lights. Advanced Stop Lanes were introduced in London in order to give way to cyclists at traffic lights, however some drivers ignore the rules and pull in the spaces, which is not only rude but can also cause accidents.
At the moment the Highway Code states: “Advanced stop lines. Some signal-controlled junctions have advanced stop lines to allow cycles to be positioned ahead of other traffic. Motorists, including motorcyclists, MUST stop at the first white line reached if the lights are amber or red and should avoid blocking the way or encroaching on the marked area at other times, e.g. if the junction ahead is blocked. If your vehicle has proceeded over the first white line at the time that the signal goes red, you MUST stop at the second white line, even if your vehicle is in the marked area. Allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows.”
From now on, if motorists ignore these rules they will face a £60 fine and will receive 3 points on their licence which could cause their motor insurance premiums to increase. Discussing the plan, London’s Cycling Commissioner Andrew Gilligan said: “The purpose of ASLs and mandatory lanes is to give cyclists protected space. We know how many cars go into advance stop boxes — probably more than 50 per cent of the time. Maybe they don’t known they are meant to stay out of them.”
“At present, you have to have a police officer standing at the junction or in a police car. What we can do is stick a camera up and do automatic enforcement. That will sort out the problem. We think if we enforce mandatory cycle lanes and ASLs, there will be much more compliance,” explained Gilligan. Compliance with bus lanes has gone up dramatically. People avoid them even when they don’t have to. We want to do exactly the same [with ASLs and cycle lanes].”