Even when cycling lanes are relatively clear of snow, the remnants of snowbanks can still reduce the width of cycling lanes thus causing cyclists to ride closer to a painted dividing line between a cycling lane and a lane used by motor vehicles. The influence of such features on collision potential is essentially ignored in cycling safety discussions.

Minimal objective data is available about how cyclists and motor vehicles interact at painted cycling lanes. In the cycling community there is broad condemnation of painted cycling lanes due to the lack of protection if a motor vehicle should wander into the lane. Yet no one has provided any objective data about the frequency of such occurrences, the characteristics of the vehicles that encroach into a cycling lane and if there are specific locations where such occurrences are more common.

At Gorski Consulting methods have been developed to document the motion of vehicles within a lane. This generally involves placing a matrix of small markers in a lane and videotaping vehicles as they pass through the matrix. An example of this method is shown below where the path of a pick-up truck was monitored as it exited off the asphalt edge of a roadway in curve.

Comparing the paths of vehicles through this matrix allows for an understanding of how and why the paths occurred.

A similar procedure can be employed for documenting cyclist and motor vehicle motions where a painted cycling lane exists. It would be useful to conduct this testing before a cycling lane was painted to observe the paths of cyclists and vehicles. Following this, when the painting completed for a cycling lane, another round of testing should be completed. This should provide an indication of how the painting of the cycling lane has changed the paths of cyclists and motor vehicles.

It is anticipated that such testing will be explored sometime during this cycling season of 2023, possibly in the vicinity of London, Ontario. Anyone interested in participating in the study can contact Zygmunt Gorski at the following e-mail address: [email protected].