Safe Drivers and Vehicles

Chris Peck's picture

'Cities fit for cycling' - a bit of a backlash?

The Times' campaign to improve safety was widely welcomed and many have come out in support, but criticism of the aims and execution was inevitable. CTC's main concern is that the campaign doesn't acknowledge the health benefits of cycling.
Cities fit for cycling logo

Most non-cyclists when asked why they don't cycle will probably list one of the main reasons as 'it's too dangerous!' This perception of danger often rests on poor understanding of the actual risks - usually most non-cyclists only view of cycling is through their windscreen as they nervously try to overtake a vulnerable looking cyclist at the side of the road. However, some of those concerns are justified: you may be less likely to die in a mile cycling than a mile walking, but you are even less likely to be killed while driving.

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Chris Peck's picture

Cities fit for cycling

The Times has launched a campaign to improve cycle safety following the serious injury to a reporter on the paper. An 8 point manifesto has been published, with the focus on lorries, junctions, cycle infrastructure and 20 mph as the default urban speed limit.
Cities fit for cycling

In November last year Mary Bowers, a journalist at The Times, was crushed by a lorry while cycling to work in east London. She remains in hospital unconscious 3 months on.

In response to this horrific event her colleagues on the paper have now launched a major campaign to increase safety for cyclists in Britain. In doing so they have taken advice from CTC and other organisations and come up with an 8 point plan of action.

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CTC's picture

Cycle casualty numbers not reducing fast enough

CTC, the national cycling charity, is concerned that the annual number of cyclist casualties does not appear to be reducing, even though the number of cycling trips remains similar to the levels seen during 2009.
Safety in Numbers

In part, the severe winter months of January, February, November and December may have contributed to there being only a small increase in cycling overall, while motor vehicle traffic fell substantially.

Contact Information: 

CTC Press Office
Email: publicity@ctc.org.uk
Telephone: 0844-736-8453

Notes to Editors: 

CTC, the national cycling charity with 67,000 members, is the oldest and largest cycling body in the UK, established in 1878. CTC provides a comprehensive range of services, advice, events and protection for its members and works to promote cycling by raising public and political awareness of cycling's health, social and environmental benefits. Visit www.ctc.org.uk.

The risk of cycling is based on the number of road deaths (111 in 2010) per mile cycled (5 billion kms in 2010). Similar data for 1990-2010 (reproduced from Department for Transport data) can be found in the table below.

Road traffic data published today: http://www2.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/roads/traff...

Road casualty data published today: http://www2.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/r...

Cycle use grew just 0.5% in 2010 but remains higher than at any time since 1991. Motor traffic fell by 8.1 billion kms (-1.6%) and has been attributed to the severe winter weather at the start and end of 2010.

Transport for London’s casualty figures can be found here: www.lscp.org.uk/lrsu/www/downloads/publications/casualties_in_greater_lo...

Latest data on cycle usage in London can be found on p. 16 of the Commissioner’s Report to the Transport for London Board meeting held this week: www.tfl.gov.uk/assets/downloads/corporate/Item04-Board-29-June-2011-Comm...

Roger Geffen's picture

Government’s new road safety strategy offers a mixed picture for cyclists

CTC has welcomed key elements of the Government's new Strategic Framework for Road Safety. However, proposals to improve standards of driving risk being undermined by cuts to police numbers.
Safety in Numbers image

Roger Geffen, CTC's Campaigns and Policy Director said: “A careless driving fixed penalty notice is welcome, but should only be used where no injury has occurred and the driving is demonstrably careless, not dangerous. We have concerns that too often driving which is objectively dangerous is treated by police and prosecutors as merely ‘careless’.”

Contact Information: 

CTC Press Office
Email: publicity@ctc.org.uk
Telephone: 0844-736-8453

Notes to Editors: 

CTC, the national cycling charity with 67,000 members, is both the oldest and largest cycling body in the UK, established in 1878. CTC provides a comprehensive range of services, advice, events and protection for its members and works to promote cycling by raising public and political awareness of cycling's health, social and environmental benefits. Visit www.ctc.org.uk.

Last year there were over 2,057 fatal crashes but only 504 prosecutions for causing death by careless, dangerous driving or careless driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Only around a third of deaths which involved at least two vehicles or a pedestrian are dealt with by an appropriate charge. This means that around 1,000 drivers who were involved in the death of another road user were either not charged, or were only charged with a lesser offence.

CTC’s Stop SMIDSY campaign gathers evidence of bad driving and failures to prosecute incidents of death and injury on Britain’s roads. Thousands of incidents of bad driving have been logged at www.stop-smidsy.org.uk.

CTC’s response to the 2009 draft road safety strategy can be found at www.ctc.org.uk/asaferway

Safety in Numbers

Safety in Numbers
The Safety in Numbers campaign aims to shift attitudes to road safety amongst government and local authorities.
Victoria Hazael's picture

Longer lorries trial goes ahead despite cyclists' objections

The Department for Transport is pressing ahead with a ten-year trial of longer lorries, despite acknowledging the potential danger to vulnerable road users and the impact on road infrastructure. During its first year, the trial could see 1,800 of the larger vehicles on the roads of the UK.
CTC - Working for Cycling

The Department for Transport is pressing ahead with a ten-year trial of longer lorries, despite acknowledging the potential danger to vulnerable road users and the impact on road infrastructure. During its first year, the trial could see 1,800 of the larger vehicles on the roads of the UK. CTC, the national cycling charity, campaigned against the proposed trial, with more than 1,300 CTC members writing to their MPs to object.

Contact Information: 

CTC Press Office
Email: publicity@ctc.org.uk
Telephone: 0844-736-8453

Notes to Editors: 

CTC, the national cycling charity with 68,000 members, is the oldest and largest cycling body in the UK, established in 1878. CTC provides a comprehensive range of services, advice, events and protection for its members and works to promote cycling by raising public and political awareness of cycling's health, social and environmental benefits. Visit www.ctc.org.uk.

Despite making up just 5% of road traffic, large goods vehicles typically are involved in 20% of cyclists’ deaths.

The Consultation on Longer Semi-Trailers was conducted earlier in the year. Details are at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/dft-2011-06. The summarised responses to the consultation can be found at: http://assets.dft.gov.uk/consultations/dft-2011-06/summary-of-responses.pdf.

Mike Penning’s claims to be considering how to improve cycle safety were reported by Press Association on 29/09/11 in the article ‘Road deaths fall to record low’.

The Coroner’s report demanding a review of lorry safety systems was published by Ministry of Justice during September 2011 in a report called ‘Summary of Reports and Responses under Rule 43 of the Coroners Rules’.

Analysis of road safety from Road Casualties Online.

No Longer Lorries

25m long lorry in Sweden (proposed British ones are shorter than this!)
Lorries are disproportionately involved in the deaths of cyclists. The Department for Transport has granted a trial to allow longer lorries onto Britain's roads, a move which CTC believe will greatly increase the risk to cyclists.
Anonymous's picture

Cyclists' Defence Fund challenges Sheffield Council on dangerous roads

The Cyclists’ Defence Fund (CDF), a charity set up to challenge legal issues affecting cyclists, has served notice on Sheffield City Council Highways that it considers one of its iconic roads to be 'out of repair'.
Cyclists' Defence Fund

The action, brought on behalf of the charity by trustee Martyn Bolt, relates to Strines Moor in the Peak District.

The route linking the A616 from Langsett to the A57 at Ladybower has been used in stages of the Tour of Britain and is likely to feature in Sheffield's proposal to host part of the Tour de France during 2016.

In some places it is impossible to cycle the road without hitting a pothole or other defect, and as gradients are as steep as one in four, the charity fears for the safety of road users.

Contact Information: 

CTC Press Office
Email: publicity@ctc.org.uk
Telephone: 0844-736-8453

Notes to Editors: 

CDF was set up in 2001 by CTC, the national cyclists’ organisation in response to the case of Darren Coombes, a nine year old cyclist who suffered brain damage from a collision with a motorist. CTC became concerned after the driver’s insurers responded to Darren’s claim for damages by counter-suing his parents for contributory negligence because Darren was not wearing a helmet. Although the insurer’s counter-claim was ultimately defeated, CDF was formed in the aftermath to defend cyclists in similar precedent-setting cases.

CDF supported CTC in preparing a legal challenge to the Department for Transport’s proposed revisions to the Highway Code, which had the potential to leave cyclists open to both civil and criminal prosecutions if they did not use cycle facilities for any reason. The threat of legal action persuaded Ministers to clarify in the wording that the use of cycle facilities is not compulsory. 

Chris Peck's picture

Portsmouth 20 mph limits lead to lower speeds and fewer casualties

15 September 2010
Two years after implementation of 20mph speed limits on 94% of the Portsmouth street network, results have shown that speeds fell, especially on roads where speeds were already high. Casualties have declined and attitudes of people to 20mph and both walking and cycling have improved.
Children campaigning for 20mph in Portsmouth

Since speeds were already low on most of the streets in the scheme (Portsmouth has narrow residential streets with lots of car parking), the overall reduction in speeds was low - around 1.3mph. However, on the streets where average speeds were greater than 24mph a 6.3mph reduction occurred.

Comparing the 3 years before the scheme was implemented and the 2 years afterwards, the number of recorded road casualties has fallen by 22% from 183 per year to 142 per year, faster than the fall in casualties in comparable areas elsewhere in the country.

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Chris Peck's picture

Government consults on 'electric personal vehicles' and e-bikes

10 March 2010
After years of delay the Department for Transport consulted on amendments to the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles (EAPC) Regulations 1983 and a separate consultation on Electric Personal Vehicles (EPV). The former are now well out of date, while the latter sets out the law for 'Segway' scooters.
Electrically assisted freight cycle in Paris

The EAPC Regulations consultation proposed harmonisation with the existing regulations that apply elsewhere in Europe. In effect they will allow very slightly higher power electrically assisted bikes but restrict them to provide power only when pedalling. This creates a class usually described as 'pedelecs' rather than electric bikes, since they are principally human powered but with electrical assistance.

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  • Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
  • President: Jon Snow
  • Chief Executive: Paul Tuohy
  • Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC): A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no.25185. Registered as a charity in England and Wales No 1147607 and in Scotland No SC042541

 

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