Question - If there is a cycle lane available to use am I legally supposed to use it?
I will always use a cycle lane (not that there are many about) as long as it doesn't slow me down. I have a 22 mile commute so I’m not messing about. The road in question is a straight, wide, 1 mile stretch of 60mph single carriageway. The cycle lane is separate to the road by a large strip of grass. To get on to it I have to go around a roundabout on the pavement which is probably a designated cycle lane too, crossing 3 roads in the process and waiting for traffic each time. One of these crossings involves going up the road 100 yards to the crossing just to come back down again.
I always get honked while cycling on this stretch mainly by Lorries which is annoying as the road is very wide and its very early in the morning so no problems overtaking. I also tend to hug the curb and do the best I can to let people past – being a car driver I know it can be frustrating if you can’t overtake but there really isn’t an issue on this road.
Anyhow I can just about cope with the honking but this morning a car clipped me with its wing mirror which almost sent me flying and royally pissed me off. He/she clearly meant to do it – if not to actually hit me then just get as close as pos. I tried to chase them but it was uphill.
Bottom line is I don’t actually care whether it’s illegal or not - I’m using the road – I think I just needed to rant as I was knocked off for the first time last month after 15 years of trouble free cycling (ironically I was in a cycle lane when I was knocked off!)