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Blackfriars Bridge Fatality

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Wednesday 12 May 2004 7.27pm
I read about the sad fatality of the cyclist on Blackfriars Bridge yesterday and wondered if the weird new bus lanes, with defaced and misleading signs, had any contribution in this tragedy?

Wednesday 12 May 2004 8.01pm
Wednesday 12 May 2004 10.11pm
On the Southbound carriageway there were rough painted out parts to the bus lane signs where there are usually indications of the time the bus lane is operational. No idea of whether it is a limited period lane or "at all times". On the Northbound carriageway, previously three pretty free moving lanes of traffic, they have inserted a central bus lane. This is unusual, maybe unique?, in central London. Once again the signs indicating lanes have been covered up in one case, and those that are uncovered are not prominent enough to indicate what the various lanes are for.
I have given up on getting any sense from tfl in their recent siting of bus lanes in places that are inappropriate. I'm sure we all know areas like my road, Grange road, with a bus lane sometimes used by 5 buses an hour, even less on Saturdays. This bus lane is ignored by at least half the car,van and lorry drivers causing no end of aggressive reactions if you try and abide by the law and stay out of the lane until the it's end. My only thought is that the dimbos sitting in the "bus lane planning division" are also too dim to have passed their driving tests.

Thursday 13 May 2004 7.36am
I too was totally confused by the new bus lanes on Blackfriars Bridge.
Thursday 13 May 2004 8.56am

I was walking across the bridge the other day when this happened. I heard a crashing/scraping noise, but it sounded so distant...I was convinced maybe a couple of cars had had a scrape at the lights, and didn't think it was worth a nosy look. I was near Blackfriars Tube station entrance when I heard a scream, and looked over my shoulder to see a group of people standing on the bridge, and someone on the road. At that stage I wished I'd seen it earlier and had some know-how of how to deal with such an accident.

From what I could see, it had happened at the Doggett's end of the bridge, but reasonably near to the middle of the bridge (where the police signs are now quite accurately mark the spot, I reckon), which is just after a bus-stop. Presuming the bus involved had stopped there, it can only have pulled directly forward and kept travelling straight...the bridge is starting to get busy at that time of day, there's no way the driver could have contemplated changing lanes until it got up to speed. There's every possibility the driver could have been doing it and miscalculated things...but it's so hard to say...
Thursday 13 May 2004 10.56am
I can't comment on the above accident, but I did watch with horror yesterday as the driver of one of the new bendy buses on the RV1 route totally ignored a zebra crossing and the pedestrian who was halfway across it.

IMHO the bus driver was going way too fast and was focussed on racing to cross the upcoming traffic lights on green - he just totally forgot about the zebra crossing. Luckily, the pedestrian was a young man who ran the last couple of steps - but he obviously got a nasty shock.

It does seem to me (as a pedestrian and occasional driver) as if the pressure on bus drivers to keep to timetable has been somewhat at the expense of driving standards. What do people who actually use the buses think ?

Thursday 13 May 2004 10.58am
I have often sat on a bus and been slightly scared by the speed of the driver and the (sometimes) manic way they drive.

Jumping red lights frequently and speed are the main issues.
Thursday 13 May 2004 11.05am
Saw the signs yesterday as I cycled south. Very sad. I take it Was this accident by the Doggetts was on the north bound side and the cyclist was hit by a bus?
Thursday 13 May 2004 11.05am
I get the bus every day and something is going seriously wrong. I think the drivers are just bored and amuse themselves by doing crazy manouvers. There are a few of them who are just complete nutters. I've challenged them a few times, specifically when they pretend not to see people waiting at a bus stop and just go straight past.

I'm not sure what can be done about this, theyy just don't seem to care.
Thursday 13 May 2004 11.11am
my partner is a policeman and hates getting the bus now as he tends to spend most of the journey standing up by the driver with his warrant card out reminding the driver that if he's not careful he could get arrested for dangerous driving.

my guess is that it is lack of pride in their job. Lets face it people tend to treat bus drivers like dirt. Whether its the customers or their employers or TfL. Tube drivers get paid an incredible amount of money. Bus drivers don't get even half that. There is competition between the different companies about time and reliability and stuff. I often get the impression that drivers are racing each other.
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