National Express and Sustrans have teamed up to develop a warning sticker which they say will "help cyclists ride safely around coaches." Cyclists can vote for one of two designs.
One of the designs is an arrow style sticker warning cyclists about passing on the left-hand side; the other includes a large eye, focusing riders’ attention on the coach driver’s blind spot. (See below for images).
The stickers were designed by National Express and a focus group of cyclists as well as Sustrans staff. All were briefed to come up with "high-impact" stickers to go on all National Express’s coaches to alert cyclists about the dangers of undertaking.
The focus group, made up of cyclists of a range of ages, genders and experience, reviewed a selection of existing stickers from a variety of companies.
Sustrans is now inviting cyclists to vote for one of the two sticker designs – with the winning design appearing on National Express’s entire coach fleet.
National Express UK Coach Managing Director Tom Stables said: “Safety is our number one priority and we are constantly looking for innovative ways to make the roads safer for all users.
“Cyclists are more aware than anyone else of which designs are the most eye catching and effective to riders, that’s why we wanted a sticker that is designed by cyclists for cyclists. Now it’s over to the cycling community to have their say and vote for their favourite design.”
Melissa Henry, Communications Director at Sustrans said: “Safety is key to ensuring that more people choose to ride, rather than drive, so initiatives like this, where cyclists can have their say on designs of safety logos, are really important. We look forward to hearing from cyclists about the design they prefer."
National Express is also installing stickers in drivers’ cabs to remind coach drivers of their responsibility to look out for cyclists, and the company is also developing a wider programme of training and education for their drivers around sharing space with cyclists and other road users.
In the Highway Code it’s permissible for cyclists to "undertake" but there have been a number of cyclist deaths recently with the deceased possibly undertaking lorries, or who were put in the inside position by HGV drivers.
There is no national campaign to prevent lorries and coaches from overtaking cyclists: the onus, it appears, is solely on cyclists. In London and other cities there have been a number of "don’t undertake" stickers produced for HGVs but they have been used on taxis, white vans and other smaller vehicles, leading to complaints from cycling organisations.