Beware of novice cyclists! FTA warns truckers as Cycle Hire Scheme launches to casual users

Monday 06 December 2010

Lorry drivers in London should be extra vigilant as thousands of inexperienced cyclists are expected to take advantage of the Cycle Hire Scheme, launched by Transport for London (TfL).

The Cycle Hire Scheme will allow anyone with a credit card to hire a bicycle from one of the many docking stations around London. Gordon Telling, FTA’s Head of Urban Logistics Policy, said:

“We are all for promoting cycling as a safe and sustainable mode of transport but, tragically, London sees by far the highest proportion of cycle and lorry collisions in the UK. This scheme is about attracting new or novice cyclists onto London’s roads and to ensure their safety, we would like to also promote greater understanding between cyclists, as vulnerable road users, and lorry drivers.”

Earlier this year, FTA supported the Mayor of London's Cycling Revolution campaign and developed the Cycling Concordat, a Memorandum of Understanding between Transport for London and FTA. This is all part of TfL’s plans to encourage cycling in the capital, with the top priority being to reduce cyclist casualties, in particular those resulting in collisions between cyclists and HGVs.

Telling concluded:

“Problems occur as cyclists that have perhaps never cycled or not for a long time take to the roads and try to keep up with the more accomplished bike riders that are used to London’s roads and know how to behave around a lorry. The vast majority of truck drivers are well aware of the dangers cyclists can sometimes expose themselves to around heavy goods vehicles, but they must now employ greater vigilance.”

Notes for editors

Since 2008 freight operators have spent over £75 million retrofitting mirrors to HGVs to improve visibility as well as supporting campaigns to promote the use of Fresnel lenses

The number of cyclists killed or seriously injured on London’s roads has fallen by 21 per cent over the last decade compared with the Government’s baseline figures from the mid to late 1990s.

Cycle journeys on London’s major roads are now up by 117 per cent since TfL was created in 2000 and by 14 per cent since April 2008. The Mayor and TfL are working towards a target of increasing the number of cycle journeys made in London by 400 per cent by 2026 (compared to 2000 levels).


FTA Press Office

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