27-Nov-2006, 09:43 PM
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Bulletin released by the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) - Elusive Excess to Bus Lanes in London (Updated 03 Oct 06)
Issued 27th September 2006
The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG UK ) says the long awaited results of bikes in bus lanes trials discussed at a seminar yesterday with Transport for London have left riders somewhat frustrated.
MAG has been working closely with Transport for London (TfL) through the London Motorcycle Working Group to push for a definitive answer on permanent motorcycle access to bus lanes which have been trialled on three routes since 2002.
The large amount of data collected in the trials was transposed through an unnecessary complex methodology which churned out a result that was at best neutral and at worst inconclusive.
However i n MAGs opinion the results clearly demonstrate that motorcycle safety has improved on the three trial routes.
In real world terms for riders this means that accidents and injuries cannot be used to prove or disprove that motorcycles should be allowed permanent access to bus lanes and thus to extend that excess to other bus lanes.
Gerard Livett, MAG's Greater London Regional Representative said, 'What we have seen today represents a collision between road safety and political expediency. The safety argument has been blown out of the water, and this now becomes a political and personal transport issue.”
London 's Kingston and Westminster Boroughs who have allowed access to bus lanes for motorcyclists gave presentations on their own trials, which have had little negative feedback and produced a positive indication of casualty reduction.
Adding further comment Gerard Livett said, “Ordinary motorcyclists are fed up of TfL's prevarication, and MAG believe that TfL should just bite the bullet and follow the example set by other cities throughout the UK and open up all their bus lanes to motorcycles."
However Transport for London has expressed a commitment to further analyse the study data and it is expected that TfL will have a final report by the end of this year.
A further commitment was made that the London Motorcycle Working Group would evolve towards a centre of excellence for motorcycling to deliver motorcyclists concerns on a range of transport debates and turn those concerns into action.
MAG says that there is a role for private motorised transport, not just in London and that motorcycles have a legitimate role to play in transport systems.
While policy and political issues take place in the background riders should simply continue to use bus lanes that allow access and enjoy the congestion busting capabilities of the motorcycle.
1. Motorcycle access to bus lanes include: Bath, Northern Ireland (48 out of 60 Bus Lanes), Birmingham, Bristol, Colchester, Derby, Reading, Grimsby, Hull, Swindon, Sunderland, M4 bus lane - junction 4 to the elevated section of the M4 near Chiswick, London – 5 trial sites. Motorcycles are granted access to High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lanes in Leeds and South Gloucestershire . Non-car lane in Moorgate in the City of London, Sheffield, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, Doncaster, Essex – Local Transport Plan 2006-2011 to propose county wide access, M1 Junctions 7-10 HOV trial site, Peterborough, Sutton