Hopefully we’ll be able to cross the channel at some point this year; in any case it’s interesting to hear what’s going on on the biking front in Europe.
On Saturday 20th February the Parisian périphérique was blocked by motorcyclists protesting the end of an experimental period in which they had been allowed to filter in between traffic on multi-lane roads. According to the study which had been conducted, accidents involving two wheelers increased by 12%, while declining for other vehicles over the same period, an outcome which was described as ‘disappointing’ by the authorities.
According to Jean-Marc Belotti, spokesperson of the FFMC (which translates as Federation of Angry French Motorcyclists) "if filtering is forbidden it will no longer be worth having a motorbike".
We know from our own experience that filtering can be dangerous, especially when done at excessive speed and with insufficient forward vision. Would a change in the law in the UK lead to a reduction in accidents? Certainly it’s hard to see that it would be readily observed or enforced.
In the meanwhile please be aware of the law in France – it’s always a good idea to check for any changes in legislation in any country where you’re riding or driving. Currently filtering is punishable by a fine of 135 Euros, which could make a nasty dent in your budget if you’re caught.
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