Cyclist seriously injured in La Orotava – and new Tráfico rules for overtaking cyclists

A cyclist was seriously injured yesterday after coming off his bike on the TF21 from La Orotava to Teide national park. The accident happened just after midday and although a car was initially thought to have run into him, it seems that it was a simple cycling accident with the bike then careering into a car. The 30-year-old rider was taken to HUC with serious head and facial injuries.

It’s worth stressing that under the new road legislation recently passed – which has mainly generated interest for its new drink-drugs penalties and child seat clauses – there are new rules for cars in the vicinity of cyclists. A minimum of 1.5m leeway is now a legal requirement on all roads and in all circumstances before a car may overtake a cyclist, and if a car is coming from the opposite direction, a cyclist may not be overtaken even if a 1.5m leeway exists. Tráfico confirms (link) that drivers can even cross a central white line where safe to do so in order to leave this required overtaking margin.This is not to imply that such an issue was at play in this accident, but it seemed a good opportunity to mention it.


  1. It’s a great pity that they don’t make a law prohibiting cyclists riding two abreast . You often see this with them chatting away to each other and you often see single cyclists riding in the middle of the carriageway . They ride on the pavements , zoom across zebra crossings and often ride on the wrong side of the road . They are just a perishing nuisance !

  2. Ray a cyclist needs as much space as a car when overtaking and if traffic is coming from opposite direction you can’t overtake and this is what I was always taught years ago in uk! You can only overtake any other road user when safe to do so, even if it means hanging back! Patience costs nothing to ensure cyclist safety, in keeping with other vehicle users on the road. I have witnessed a few distressing road accidents lately, cyclists and vehicles and we really all need to slow down!

  3. and if a car is coming from the opposite direction, a cyclist may not be overtaken even if a 1.5m leeway exists.

    That is crazy. It literally means that you cannot overtake any cyclist if there is a stream of traffic coming in the opposite direction – which is not uncommon on the roads here.

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