Just last week there was yet another news story about a tragic accident between a HGV and cyclist. 26-year-old Janina Gehlau lost her life after being involved in a collision with a left-turning lorry at Ludgate Circus, in London.
What makes the tragedy even harder to comprehend it that another cyclist died at exactly the same junction just months before, in April.
Between 2008-2012 six cyclists died on this junction because of similar incidents with vehicles. Transport for London have finally decided to take action upon this with the proposed North-South cycle superhighway route, which was announced in September – unfortunately too late for Janina Gehlau.
Gehlau’s mother, Andrea Tasic, said that better messaging around cycle safety and HGVs is required.
She told BBC News “The whole mentality needs to change and road users need to be more considerate to each other. Of course we do not know what happened in this case, but messaging around cycle safety and HGVs is not getting through.”
Whilst the new cycle superhighway won’t provide better education to road users, it does look like it will help to reduce cyclist deaths on the road.
The new cycle superhighway
Transport for London (TfL) has proposed a continuous, largely segregated two-way cycle track between Oval and Pimlico. The proposed track would allow cyclists and drivers to avoid each other, and as a result, would offer major improvements in safety and comfort for cyclists. TfL canvased opinions from the public as to which route should be taken further.
The new plans include more restrictions on the roads for vehicle drivers – such as no left turn from Vauxhall Bridge Road into Millbank and no right turn from Harleyford Road into Kensington Lane, a segregated two-way cycle track to replace traffic lanes and bus lanes, and wider shared footway and crossings for pedestrians.
With 3,000 cyclists using Vauxhall Bridge in rush hour alone, TfL decided it was about time that they helped cyclists by providing them with facilities that are segregated to give them confidence to cycle within central London.
Improving education in the north
Londoners aren’t the only ones taking action to improve cyclist safety, Northern Soul magazine is also calling for safer cycling in the North of England through the use of education, new laws and mandatory safety equipment for HGVs. Northern Souls’ Cycle for Change initiative has five main points:
1) Introducing compulsory cycling proficiency in schools
2) Lorries entering cities must be equipped with basic safety measures, including sensors and safety bars
3) The most dangerous junctions in the North must be identified and steps taken to improve them
4) There must be a dedicated, regular budget for cycling both at local and national level
5) Current laws dealing with those who cause death or serious injury must be re-examined
At Vision Techniques, our products help to improve road safety and include sensors and alarms to improve driver awareness and reduce potential incidents. Combined with better knowledge and revised laws, we’re confident that safety on Britain’s roads can be much improved. Why not call use today on 01254 679 717 to see how our products can give you piece of mind.