Wall Of Death Cycle Protest In London

Protest By A Cycling Safety Pressure Group Has Urged London Councils To Do More To Segregate Riders From Motorised Traffic

04.04.2014

Road safety for cyclists may be a more prominent issue in the upcoming European and local election campaigns, following the unveiling of a memorial to riders killed on London's roads.

Safety campaigners from protest group Stop Killing Cyclists (SKC) dismounted from their bikes and unveiled a lengthy banner - dubbed a "wall of death" - outside Westminster City Hall with 56 red crosses, one for each of the riders killed on the capital's roads since the last local elections in 2010, The Evening Standard reports.

The most recent victims included bus depot manager Kevin Lane, who was killed in Woodford Green in February, plus retired teacher Michael Mason, who died after an accident in Regent Street last month. SKC was launched after six cyclists died last November.

Westminster is among the 30 councils out of 33 in the capital that failed to install segregated cycle lanes since 2010, the pressure group said. The only local authorities that have taken such action are Ealing, Waltham Forest and Camden.

Furthermore, freedom of information requests have revealed only four - Barking and Dagenham, Barnet, Hounslow and Waltham Forest - will be introducing Dutch-style segregated lanes next year. By contrast, 13 boroughs admitted they had no segregated lanes at all.

Author of the group's report Will Nickell remarked: "This research for the first time exposes the lethal failure by the vast majority of London's boroughs to invest in Go-Dutch standard segregated safe-cycle lanes."

Local authorities in London have spent a collective total of £795,000 on segregated lanes in the past four years, but SKC wants to see this increase. Spokesman Donnachadh McCarthy said the group will be asking all candidates in the upcoming elections to support the spending of ten per cent of the transport budget on establishing segregated lane systems.

In addition to the potential dangers to cyclists of traffic in built-up areas, the state of roads can also be a frequent point of concern for riders.

Last month, an inquest ruled that the condition of the A65 road at Giggleswick in North Yorkshire was to blame for an accident in which a rider came off his bike when he hit a pothole and fell in front of an oncoming vehicle.

If you or a loved one has been injured in cycling accident, our specialist cycling accident lawyers could help you claim compensation. Visit our Road Traffic Accident Compensation page for more information.

Expert Opinion
Cycling safety has never been so firmly in the spotlight and SKC’s campaign demonstrates its determination to ensure that the Government and local authorities recognise the need for urgent action to prevent further fatalities.

"Due to our work on behalf of injured victims and the families of cyclists injured and killed in road traffic collisions, we have seen the consequences that such incidents have on cyclist’s loved ones, their friends and the wider community.

"The number of cycling deaths across the UK and especially in London has reached worryingly high levels and everything possible needs to be done to reduce this trend, including the use of more cycle-friendly road layouts and improvements to the conditions of existing routes."
Neil Whiteley, Partner