Cyclists tell bus drivers – keep your distance!

Date published: 20 April 2010

The Love Your Bike campaign has released the results of a survey in which they asked Greater Manchester cyclists to rank the types of bus driver behaviour that makes them feel unsafe on the roads.

Over 700 people responded to the survey and the top three bus driver behaviours that cause concerns for all cyclists, whether they cycle occasionally or everyday, were (figures expressed as percentages of respondents that selected the behaviour):

  1. ‘Passing too close to you’ (76%) 
  2. ‘Pulling out from bus stops without looking and signalling’ (60%) 
  3. ‘Overtaking when not necessary (in busy traffic or approaching a bus stop)’ (43%)

In Greater Manchester there are very few cyclist fatalities or serious injuries from incidents between buses and bicycles. However, poor or thoughtless bus driver behaviours can deter people from cycling. Love Your Bike campaigners often talk to people about cycling, and buses are a common cause of concern for those considering cycling more often.

Dr Graeme Sherriff, Manchester Friends of the Earth transport campaign co-ordinator said: “Cycling more often is a great way to build healthy exercise into daily routine. But it is understandable that there is some concern about safety on the roads. This survey has identified some positive actions that can be taken to make cycling a more attractive option. Bus companies and Local Authorities need to work together to address these issues.”

The Love Your Bike campaign will be sharing the results with the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority/Executive, bus operators and other public bodies who want to increase cycling levels in Greater Manchester to get a better understanding of how to reduce the barriers to cycling and make the roads more cycling-friendly.

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