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These words by Lesley Evans Ogden – Award-winning freelance science journalist – caught our eye. Lesley cycled every major city in Europe, and found London the most terrifying.
“I spent some time watching cyclists crossing the Southwark bridge section of one of the cycle superhighways. Riding along CS7’s blue-painted bike lane on a Boris bike largely unseparated from mixed, fast-moving traffic, made me anxious and uneasy. What’s more, I suffer from asthma, making me a bit of a human canary for air pollution. After the noticeably clean air of Copenhagen, the polluted air of London made for laboured breathing. London is beginning to make progress on provisions for cyclists, and there are good sections of the growing infrastructure, but I saw plenty of room for improvement. On both sides of Southwark Bridge, the short, separated span of blue bike lane, protected by a concrete barrier, fed straight into a bus stop. This forced cyclists to choose between two unappealing options: wait like a sitting duck behind the bus while it stops, or pull out into traffic to overtake, and risk being in one of the bus’s many blind spots when it pulls out from the kerb.”
London’s Mayor – a cyclist himself – is making gradual progress. In 2013, TfL announced its safe streets for London plan, which aims to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured by 40% by 2020.
A question to all risk managers…
Want to increase bike safety and lower the cost of your risk?
The popularity of cycling has grown in recent times and the benefits of cycling are clear. However the police receive 19,000 reports each year of cyclists being killed or hurt on the roads. Whilst 16% of these incidents do not involve a motor vehicle hitting the cyclist, there are many more incidents that are not reported to the police. Access our guidance notes here.