Door Zone

How far from the curb do you cycle? It’s common knowledge that if you want to make yourself more visible, you need to dominate the road rather than hugging the gutter, which is easy enough if you can match the traffic speed levels. If, like me, you prefer to maintain a steady, comfortable pace, you will need to keep to the cycle lane to allow traffic to pass. Generally the recommended distance is 1 metre. This allows you enough space to avoid potholes and careless pedestrians without having to swerve too dramatically. Personally, I tend to skim the line. My main “door zone” is on Waterloo Bridge where there are several things to take into account: pedestrians crossing in silly places, buses zooming by (and pulling into bus stops!), motorists that simply must get ahead, parked cars that may pull out or people might get out of them, and of course, other cyclists who will certainly zoom past in spite of the strong headwinds drifting up from the Thames.

This video is enlightening to say the least. It may not be practical to apply on most roads, but there’s a lesson in it that is worth remembering.

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