No room for bikers

A council spokesman said they have to follow police guidelines.
A council spokesman said they have to follow police guidelines.

GLASGOW city council has said they cannot change the law governing motorcycles using bus lanes.

One reader — writing under the name Skidlid — contacted the paper following our story about the council enforcing a segregation of traffic with fines of up to £60 for motorists who use bus lanes.

He explained he hoped the council would relent on allowing motorcyclists to use the lanes, as pedal cyclists and taxis are allowed.

He told The Extra: “Seriously, Glasgow may have something to learn from London which, after two 18-month trials, has decided to let bikers into most of its Red Route bus lanes.

“The trials showed that, overall, collision rates in bus lanes fell by nearly 12 per cent and the average speed of motorbikes using the lanes actually slowed as the trials went on — and there was no significant change in collisions involving pedestrians in the lanes”.

The survey, carried out by the Transport Research Laboratory, showed that on the London’s network sites the number of motorcycles involved in collisions decreased by 16 per cent (from 32 down to 27) during the second trial.

The survey goes on to state: “The corresponding figures for the Network Borough Sites was a 23 per cent reduction (13 to 10)”.

However, a spokesman for Glasgow city council said their hands are tied.

He told The Extra: “The legislation passed by the Scottish government simply allows a handful of local authorities to enforce the existing rules already applied by police — it doesn’t alter who is able to use bus lanes or under what circumstances”.

The move has not been popular with all our readers and has attracted comment on our web site.

Craig Park, of Newton Mearns, said it was another attempt by the council to force drivers onto what he called “sub-standard public service transport”.

Mr Park added: “I put it to you that if cameras are to enforce these lanes, then the same cameras should be used to fine bus drivers who flounce in and out of the lanes when it suits them, causing mayhem.

“Anyone who has used said transport of late will know there is no value for money.

“These guys have a hard job, but the council needs to rethink the transport strategy — it’s doomed to clog our roads more than ever”.