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UK-wide push on cycle safety needed, says BLG

  • 02 December 2013
  • By Hayley Pink

The Brewery Logistics Group (BLG) has called on cities up and down the country to share best-practice in a bid to boost cyclist safety on UK roads.

In the wake of the recent cyclist fatalities in London, BLG chairman Mike Bracey told CM that the Central London Freight Quality Partnership, which he participates in, has been looking at a successful initiative run by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) to see how it compares with London enforcement activity.

Operation Grimaldi, launched just over a year ago, is a scheme aimed at educating all road users to share Manchester’s busy roads safely. Police officers provide interactive workshops, where an LGV, provided by Fagan Whalley, is set up at an angle to highlight the dangers of blind spots, and cyclists are encouraged to sit in the cab, as well as explaining other hazards on the roads.

Police also patrol five main hotspots in Manchester and issue £50 Traffic Offence Reports to cyclists riding dangerously, such as jumping red lights and not using lights. This fine is then cancelled if cyclists attend a free-of-charge safety course.

A similar system is used for motorists too, although the cost of the relevant course is borne by the driver.
To date, 650 cyclists have been stopped, the bulk of which are for failing to comply with traffic signs, and 444 have attended the safety presentations.

Inspector Paul Rowe, who heads up the scheme, told CM it is “amazing how many people have not had any cycle training” – 93% of those stopped.

Stephen Fagan, commercial director at Fagan Whalley, told CM: “We agreed to get involved as this enabled us to make a direct contribution to cycle safety awareness, and to highlight the problems around the increased numbers of cyclists in our towns and cities to our drivers; a two-way thing.”

Last week the Labout party launched an HGV Safety Charter, weighing into the cycle safety debate

  • The Transport Committee is to hold an evidence session on cycle safety in Westminster on 2 December.


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