Safer Lorries to Help Cyclists and Pedestrians

The Mayor of London has launched a consultation on proposals to improve road safety by ensuring that lorry drivers can see cyclists and pedestrians. Thousands of lorries could be banned from the streets of London as a result.

HGVs are involved in more than half of cycling deaths on London roads. Often lorries turning left and unable to see cyclists to their left are the cause. Pedestrians are affected in a similar way.

Previous proposals in this area have been changed. Now there will a star rating system for HGVs and only those rated three stars or above will be permitted into London. The proposals would be brought in between 2020 and 2024. But there are 35,000 HGVs (many of them serving construction sites) that are likely to be zero rated currently operating on the streets of London. There will be substantial costs in adapting those vehicles or replacing them.

The previous consultation on these proposals got a very mixed response with strong support from cyclists of course but lots of objections from those affected on the grounds that it would not solve the problems, be difficult to implement, on technical grounds and for other reasons. The ABD objected because we consider it wrong that there should be different regulations in London from the rest of the country (as vehicles do travel around). It should be tackled at a national level. If there are benefits to road safety from these proposals, why should not the rest of the country get them imposed also?

See here for more information: https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/roads/safer-lorries . But it does not seem that there will be any further consultation on this matter which is unfortunate as clearly there was no unanimity in support of it previously.

Roger Lawson

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