Bollards & Barriers- cycle path perils.

posted in: Campaigning, Cycleways

Bollard - cyclist hitting

                                                                                                                 Bollard Crash Caught on Video

Obscured bollards

You can see how easy it is for a  cyclist to hit a bollard when a sight line is obscured.  In this case forward vision is obscured by another cyclist.  There are many reasons why a rider’s attention can be obscured or distracted.

This can happen frequently.  Friends,club mates,or even a stranger cycling alone ahead can obscure a solid structure regardless of how brightly painted it is,  Striking a solid object at even moderate speed can lead to life-changing injury. The rider in this video was travelling only slightly above running pace, but could easily have fractured a collar bone or worse.  ..

Why bollards?

Bollards are installed with the excuse is that they’re to prevent motor access..  But in many instances there is no evidence to suggest that cars would use the path.  And where there is a likelihood of motor cycle access,  bollards are ineffective unless  ‘A’ frames are used.  As these hinder the passage of adapted cycles often used by disabled folk, such as recumbents and tricycles, they should only be installed in exceptional circumstances where both cars and motor cycles are a problem.

Design Guidelines

Design Guidelines advise (Local Traffic Notes 2/08) state:- Section 8:11:1 “If barriers or bollards are required to restrict motor vehicle access to the route, they should be highlighted through the use of reflective material or high visibility paint, especially in areas where there is no street lighting. A cycle audit during the hours of darkness as well as in daylight may help to identify potential hazards.”

Cyclingnorthwales says>>>

Bollards are often being installed on the whim of a design engineer.  The guidelines do not say bollards ‘must’ be installed.  Some have been removed without a problem. There should be an evidence based  ‘proven’ need for their installatio. , it is a disgrace the extent to which cyclists are being exposed to unnecessary risks.

Take a look at the photos below.  Imagine being propelled on top of one of those bollards – at 15mph!!!   Do let us know of your experience,or the experience of a friend. There is a reluctance to report such incidents.  Many are probably only recorded in hospital A&E records, with victims erroneously believing they alone are at fault – when the fault lies elsewhere..