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Advanced stop lines

Advanced stop lines are a set of white stop lines placed at junctions which are controlled by traffic lights. 

They have been created to allow a safe haven for cyclists at the head of a queue of traffic waiting for the traffic lights to change to green. 

Cyclists can enter the ASL via the cycle lane or by crossing the first stop line at any point (Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2016). Drivers of all vehicles must obey the rules relating to traffic lights (A reminder of these rules is listed below).​​​

Advanced stop line

Image showing an advanced stop line

Where the road markings shown in the image to the right have been placed in conjunction with Traffic light signals, a "stop line" in relation to those light signals means:

  • The first stop line is the first white stop line painted on the road surface a vehicle would cross on the approach to the traffic lights and does not apply to cyclists.

  • The second stop line is the white stop line painted on the road surface closest to the traffic lights. This stop line is applicable to all road users.

When a vehicle approaches an advanced stop line system and the traffic lights at the junction change from green to amber, the vehicle must stop before the first stop line (closest to your vehicle). 

Unless the vehicle is either on the stop line or so close to the stop line that it would be unsafe to stop prior to the first stop line, then the vehicle may cross the first stop line but must stop before the second stop line.​


Photographs – Bank Junction

Advanced stop line - Good example

The two photographs on this page show the advanced stop lines system in use at Bank junction, and illustrate both good and bad examples of what to do at an advanced stop line.​

In the first photograph the taxi has stopped behind the first stop line, as required by law, and is demonstrating correct use of the advanced stop line.

Advanced stop line - Bad example

​The second photograph shows the taxi has driven beyond the first stop line and into the advanced stop box reserved for use by cyclists.

The photograph shows that the taxi is breaking the law (unless the vehicle was so close to the first stop line when the lights changed that it would have been unsafe to stop).​