Georgia Corr

The Impact of a Child’s Bicycle Seat and Cargo Bike on the Objective Overtaking Behaviour of Motorised Vehicles in London’s Suburban Context

THE PERCEIVED RISK of cycling, particularly relating to cycling with motorised traffic, is a widespread barrier cited across multiple groups. This research seeks to establish the objective impact of different bicycle types – namely, a standard bicycle, a child’s bicycle seat, and cargo bike – on drivers overtaking proximities in the London Borough of Ealing.

Alongside looking at the impact of different bicycle types, the study investigates a range of secondary variables including whether the presence of escorting a child (using a doll baby), gender, and different types of cycling infrastructure impacts drivers’ overtaking behaviour. The aim is to provide a robust understanding of how different variables interact and affects drivers’ behaviour to establish what actions policymakers can make to encourage more people to start cycling, and particularly currently underrepresented groups such as families and women.

To undertake this research, a sensor was attached to all of the bicycles to capture the amount of cleared lateral space motorists provide when overtaking. To understand whether a relationship exists on the types of vehicles that overtake, and the amount of overtaking space provided, a camera attached to the handlebar of the bikes enabled sensor readings to be matched with the camera footage.

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