June 2009

23 June 2009
Motorcycles in bus lanes
Rob Fisher

Motorcycles are now allowed in certain bus lanes in London.  This is safer for bikes because often the alternative to using the empty bus lane is to filter close to oncoming traffic.  Unfortunately it is quite hard to tell which bus lanes you are allowed to use, because the signs telling you are small and hard to see.  And there are people waiting to catch you out if you stray into the wrong bus lane, as I found out to my cost.

06 June 2009
Nowait
Rob Fisher

The IET’s Engineering and Technology magazine this month has an article about a proposed light rail system called Nowait in Sweden.  The track forms a loop and so does the train.  In the station carriages turn sideways and go slowly enough to let people on, then they turn lengthways and speed up to 40km/h.  There are a couple of animations on the company’s site if you click the “how it works” link.

It looks cool, but I have reservations.  All the carriages are linked together, so if there is a problem the whole system would need to be stopped, leaving people stranded between stations.  The system can’t adapt to busy and quiet periods.  And I wonder how long you will have to wait to pass through each station.  But if it gets built I will go and try it out.