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Motorcycles and fully electric vehicles can now use Elizabeth Way bus lane in Cambridge




Motorcycles and fully electric vehicles can now use the bus lane in Cambridge’s Elizabeth Way as part of a trial.

An Experimental Traffic Regulation Order (ETRO) came into force from December 14 extending the use of the bus lane, which can already be utilised by cyclists and taxi drivers, in addition to buses.

The bus lane sign on the Elizabeth Way bridge in Cambridge. Electric vehicles and motorcycles can now use the lane. Picture: Cambridgeshire County Council (43557350)
The bus lane sign on the Elizabeth Way bridge in Cambridge. Electric vehicles and motorcycles can now use the lane. Picture: Cambridgeshire County Council (43557350)

Explaining the reasons for the trial, which could run for up to 18 months, the county council said: “Motorcycles are more fuel-efficient and use less road space than cars, so the council wishes to encourage greater use of them. Allowing motorcycles to use bus lanes is an additional incentive for people to purchase and use powered two-wheelers in preference to private cars.”

Encouraging greater use of motorcycles could have other consequences, however.

Motorcycles make up just one per cent of road traffic, yet account for 19 per cent of the road users involved in fatal accidents, according to government data.

But the council says: “Motorcycle use of bus lanes could have some safety benefits, as it would reduce the likelihood of motorcyclists weaving between lanes of slow moving traffic to avoid queues.

“The government has legislated to ban the purchase of petrol, diesel and hybrid cars from 2035 and is encouraging drivers to purchase ZEVs [zero emission electric vehicles]. By allowing them to use bus lanes, it is hoped that this will provide an additional incentive for people to buy ZEVs.”

The council said if it proves successful, it may extend the exemption to other bus lanes.

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