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# Honked at for obeying the Highway Code watch

1. The highway code states "give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car" and there is a clear picture to illustrate what this means (at the end of rule 163 https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-high...oad-159-to-203). A couple of times recently when driving, I have been honked at by the car behind me for not overtaking a cyclist when there would be nowhere near enough room to overtake a car. This is quite embarrassing as the cyclist might think that I am honking at them! I would be interested to hear other peoples' views on this.

On this note, what would people advise if there is a cyclist in a cycle lane (which is significantly narrower than a car's width) and little room to allow more clearance than the width of the cycle lane?
2. (Original post by maths42)
The highway code states "give motorcyclists, cyclists and horse riders at least as much room as you would when overtaking a car" and there is a clear picture to illustrate what this means (at the end of rule 163 https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-high...oad-159-to-203). A couple of times recently when driving, I have been honked at by the car behind me for not overtaking a cyclist when there would be nowhere near enough room to overtake a car. This is quite embarrassing as the cyclist might think that I am honking at them! I would be interested to hear other peoples' views on this.

On this note, what would people advise if there is a cyclist in a cycle lane (which is significantly narrower than a car's width) and little room to allow more clearance than the width of the cycle lane?
The Highway Code isn't the be all and end all of driving.

As long as you give them a comfortable amount of room, you don't need to be that far away from them.
3. People also don’t know how to drive, I quickly discovered this after passing my test 4 years ago lol
4. (Original post by IWMTom)
The Highway Code isn't the be all and end all of driving.

As long as you give them a comfortable amount of room, you don't need to be that far away from them.
Recently I saw a cyclist who started weaving into the middle of the road without looking, for no apparent reason (he was not turning right and there were no potholes). If I had overtaken him in the way that a lot of drivers do, it is likely that I would have hit him.
5. (Original post by maths42)
Recently I saw a cyclist who started weaving into the middle of the road without looking, for no apparent reason (he was not turning right and there were no potholes). If I had overtaken him in the way that a lot of drivers do, it is likely that I would have hit him.
That's when you beep your horn.
6. (Original post by IWMTom)
That's when you beep your horn.
Beeping the horn doesn't prevent accidents. Whilst people shouldn't cycle like this, drivers have a responsibility to take extra care around them as the Highway Code says. A cyclist might get blown out into the road on a windy day! Or if it is dark, they might see a pothole at the last minute!
7. (Original post by maths42)
Beeping the horn doesn't prevent accidents. Whilst people shouldn't cycle like this, drivers have a responsibility to take extra care around them as the Highway Code says. A cyclist might get blown out into the road on a windy day! Or if it is dark, they might see a pothole at the last minute!
If a cyclist starts drifting into the middle of the road, beeping your horn warns them of your presence...
8. (Original post by IWMTom)
If a cyclist starts drifting into the middle of the road, beeping your horn warns them of your presence...
True but if it could be too late for them to react in time. When people honk, I wish that I could explain to them that I am obeying the Highway Code!
9. (Original post by maths42)
True but if it could be too late for them to react in time. When people honk, I wish that I could explain to them that I am obeying the Highway Code!
If you were being beeped at, odds are the driver behind you has a hell of a lot more experience than you, and knows you're being too cautious.
10. (Original post by IWMTom)
If you were being beeped at, odds are the driver behind you has a hell of a lot more experience than you, and knows you're being too cautious.
But honking at someone in that situation could lead them to overtake a cyclist when it is unsafe. It is one thing to act outside of the Highway code oneself with judgement, but another thing to try to force others to.
11. (Original post by maths42)
But honking at someone in that situation could lead them to overtake a cyclist when it is unsafe. It is one thing to act outside of the Highway code oneself with judgement, but another thing to try to force others to.
Sometimes overcautious drivers need a soft kick up the backside to break out of their comfort zone and drive correctly.
12. (Original post by IWMTom)
Sometimes overcautious drivers need a soft kick up the backside to break out of their comfort zone and drive correctly.
Obeying the Highway Code is driving correctly!
13. Personally, I would wait until I could give the cyclist a wide berth and ignore the motorist behind.
14. (Original post by maths42)
Obeying the Highway Code is driving correctly!
I'm sorry, but no. The Highway Code is archaic, and many of the "rules" in there are so outdated they need removing.

Did somebody say braking distances?
15. (Original post by IWMTom)
I'm sorry, but no. The Highway Code is archaic, and many of the "rules" in there are so outdated they need removing.

Did somebody say braking distances?
So did you disobey the Highway Code in your driving test and explain that to the examiner? Remember that you are only allowed to drive on the basis that you passed that test...
16. (Original post by maths42)
Obeying the Highway Code is driving correctly!
Erm... no. Not irl driving. Just for passing the test, sure.
17. (Original post by maths42)
So did you disobey the Highway Code in your driving test and explain that to the examiner? Remember that you are only allowed to drive on the basis that you passed that test...
The test is archaic too - it's merely a box ticking exercise. Other countries do it so much better.
18. (Original post by IWMTom)
If a cyclist starts drifting into the middle of the road, beeping your horn warns them of your presence...
Because startling another road user who already appears to be struggling to control their vehicle is a great idea
19. (Original post by PQ)
Because startling another road user who already appears to be struggling to control their vehicle is a great idea
That's what it's there for, according to the HC that OP is preaching!
20. (Original post by maths42)
Obeying the Highway Code is driving correctly!
I would suggest (as both a cyclist and a driver) that you make sure you’re well back from the cyclist if you’re not overtaking. Having a car sat close behind you isn’t comfortable on a bike (and without mirrors it often seems closer than it is because you’re relying on the sound of the engine). If you’re a good car length behind the bike then you’ll have plenty of space to accelerate and pull out when there’s a gap, the cyclist won’t feel pressured and anyone behind honking their horn will be well back from the cyclist so there’s no risk of them thinking it’s you beeping at them.

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