With the growth of bike lanes in downtown Vancouver personal injury lawyers representing injured pedestrians, cyclist and car accident claimants face new signage, lane design and street markings as excuses for potentially dangerous and deadly accidents. Vancouver wants to be the best City for cyclists in the world and in that regard I believe a personal injury lawyer’s top priority in Vancouver should be to promote a community in which cyclists, pedestrians and all users of our roadways are accountable for their actions, and a community in which innocent victims of injury are properly and fully compensated .
In Vancouver most people are used to seeing this sign:
But did you know what these road markings mean?
I have been a personal a personal injury lawyer in Vancouver since 1995 and I have represented cyclist and pedestrians injured due to confusing signage and road markings. Usually these injuries occur through a combination of lack of attention, speed, and confusing signage/markings. With the new bike lanes in Vancouver all users of the roads must educate themselves with respect to the new changes.
The City of Vancouver has published a page on symbols to know which helps explain the road markings above. These are explained as “crossbikes crossings” where cyclists are permitted to ride. The markings are used to identify them are sometimes called elephant’s feet. According to the City, “Crossbikes may or may not be exclusive to cyclists; often they are shared with pedestrians. Shared pedestrian/cyclist crossings are identified by both standard crosswalk markings and ‘elephants’ feet’, with the crossbike markings on each side of the standard crosswalk. ” If this sounds confusing well, it is. I see potential for real problems if you have two bikes going in opposite directions and a pedestrian in the middle. It only takes one of these people to become confused to cause a disaster.
The crossbikes crossings with the elephant’s feet markings appear to be an attempt increase the convenience of cyclists but it will also decrease pedestrian safety. As Vancouver moves towards having more cyclists on the road we have to maintain better safety for pedestrians as well. Many of the standard and well know roads signs should be used instead of creating new markings and signage that no one knows or understands.
This brief discussion by an injury lawyer of crossbikes crossings is only my attempt to illustrate how little many of us really know about our changing community of road signs and markings.
Posted by Vancouver Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness, B.A. LL.B.
Issue: Do you think crossbikes crossings with the elephant’s feet are safe? Are there other new signs and markings that you think are confusing?