Photo: pedaleandoporcanarias.com

Around 70 cyclists, accompanied by the President of the Federación Insular de Ciclismo de Tenerife, Juan Marrero, gathered in the Las Galletas area yesterday morning for a protest ride and a minute’s silence in honour of the Belgian cyclist knocked down and killed last Thursday morning (link). The TF66 is a favourite road for the activity because of its extra-wide hard shoulder, but cyclists say that it has two major disadvantages: firstly the poor state of the road means that motorised vehicles often seek to avoid cracks and potholes by moving onto the side areas thus endangering cyclists, and that this risk is exacerbated by the high speed limit on the road – 100 km/h, the result of the 1.5 width of the hard shoulder.

Cyclists released a list of demands, which they say are no more than common sense for all road users:

  • To limit the speed of the TF66 and other similar roads to bear in mind the numbers of cyclists who use them;
  • To place road signs showing the presence of cyclists;
  • To place visible posters showing the road as one used by cyclists;
  • To repair the tarmac to avoid motorists needing to use the hard shoulder;
  • To develop an effective signposting policy for roads used by cyclists, not least because cycling is a tourism generator;
  • To maintain the hard shoulders of roads so that cyclists can use them and not invade the carriageway;
  • To organize educative campaigns in the media for drivers and cyclists for all to understand and respect the rules of the road.

Cycling organizations say that they are fed up of hearing that the Tenerife authorities are working on improving maintenance, adding cycle lanes and introducing signposting, and that their lives are at risk daily. They demand that the words stop and are replaced by action.

This article has 5 Comments

  1. I also think the cyclists should not cycle two and three abreast which makes it very dangerous for motorists trying to pass them. Although I feel very sorry for the cyclist who lost his life I do feel the cyclist have no regard for the motorist . I also cycle but I do try to respect everyone wh uses the roads especially the back road to guaza .

  2. I do still find it surprising that, as I understand it, it is perfectly legal here to cycle two abreast. I think the UK requires cyclists to ride in single file on public roads.

  3. Cycling 2 or 3 abreast is a safety strategy and perfectly legal here and in the UK ( 2 abreast in UK)

    It requires car drivers to slow and plan their overtake in a safe place, where as riding in a long line, single file just encourages drivers to try and pass too closely and too fast, often trying to cut in to the string of riders when they run out of overtaking space. Personally the whole thing about signage is pointless hot air. What is needed is drivers to follow the rules of the road ( giving 1.5m space) and driving with care and without distrctions, which I know is a long shot!
    Tenerife drivers are generally more courtious than UK drivers, although you have to be constantly on your guard with hire cars as often they are paying more attention to the satnav or the scenery than the road ahead. One of the reasons I prefer to ride mountain bikes, off road, but see the issues when we do have to venture into the roads at times.

  4. Cyclists need better training too. Do they have to pass any road safety tests to cycle on the roads here? I ask because only a few weeks ago a cyclist pulled out right in front of my car on that very roundabout and I had to actually stop on the roundabout and wait until he had passed my exit so that I could leave the roundabout, which was a hazard in itself! With hindsght perhaps I should have done an extra rotation of the roundabout while waiting for him to get out of my way, but that wouldn’t have protected him from the traffic behind me on the roundabout who might not have seen him. I’m not a cyclist but surely he should have either given way to the traffic already on the roundabout, as cars have to do, and waited until it was clear, or dismounted and crossed like a pedestrian. A less alert driver than I might have mushed him.

  5. I also like to drive with the bike, but in Tenerife there is no road sign for cyclists as well as a lack of road markings (non-existent)
    The worst is that the road infrastructure can not cope cyclisme. There simply is not enough space ((So we on public roads. Sometimes just 5km per hour because the road rises.
    And since they are road users, they must also take a compulsory insurance such as car and motorcycle drivers.

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