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Boris could introduce a ban to save cyclists in London

Posted on Saturday, 23 November 2013 11:07AM by
A report in The Times this week raises an interesting debate on cycling in cities, with a comparison to Paris laws............


This news would also mean the need for more Cycle Shelters in convenient locations to help with this proposal.

"Boris Johnson would consider banning lorries from the streets of London during rush hour to halt the rise in the number of cyclists killed or seriously injured.
The Mayor’s comments at City Hall followed a recommendation from Chris Boardman, the Olympic Gold medalist and policy adviser to British Cycling, that heavy goods vehicles should be removed from the streets at the busiest times to save lives.
His comments followed a recommendation from Chris Boardman, the Olympic Gold medalist and policy adviser to British Cycling, that heavy goods vehicles should be removed from the streets at the busiest times to save lives.
Mr Johnson told the London Assembly: “What would be the effect, in terms of lives saved, of banning lorries in the peak hours? We need to dig into this a lot and we need to work out how it would work. I am not adverse to the idea instinctively.”
He added: “I don’t rule it out. We are going to look at all the experiences of other cities.”
The Mayor mentioned Paris, where the biggest lorries are only allowed to deliver between 10pm and 7am and medium-sized vehicles between 10am and 5pm. There were no fatalities among cyclists in central Paris in 2011. However, Mr Johnson said that 17 people were killed in the greater Paris region last year, more than in London.
The Mayor cited the London Olympics, when highways authorities lifted a night-time ban on lorry deliveries in Central London.
“We did a lot during the Olympics to try to move traffic off the roads during times when there was going to be congestion,” Mr Johnson said.
He added: “There is a risk, I believe, of a great glut of lorries as soon as the peak is over and these would also be in conflict with other road users including cyclists and pedestrians during that period.
“What is difficult is to imagine that we could somehow ban them altogether from London roads when they are needed for construction, they are needed to keep the economy going.”
His comments came as the Mayor was forced to defend his cycling policies after a spate of fatalities this month. Six cyclists have been killed in London in the past two weeks.
Lorries pose a particular risk. Thirty cyclists have been killed by lorries in London in the past four years and 25 were killed by HGVs in the country last year alone.
Speaking on the day of the latest fatality on Monday, Boardman said that lorries should face restrictions at peak times. “Lorries cannot have unrestricted access to all the roads in London,” he said. “I’m afraid he just can’t have his vision without tough choices like this.”
But yesterday, the man who won Gold at the Barcelona Olympics defended the Mayor from critics who seized on comments in which Mr Johnson appeared to blame cyclists who wear headphones or disobey the Highway Code. “I don’t want to join in with this ‘Boris bashing’. Boris is the only person who had the guts to do something about cycling in London,” Boardman said.
“Cyclists are vulnerable and it’s tough cycling round the capital. All road-users must obey the rules of the road. It makes me mad to see cyclists behaving badly on the road.”
During heated exchanges at Mayoral question time, Mr Johnson said that the number of cyclists killed in London had fallen to 81 between 2008 and 2013, compared with 102 in the previous six years.
However, the Assembly heard that the number of cyclists killed or seriously injured rose to 671 last year from 571 in 2011. Jenny Jones, the Green Party member, quoted Transport for London figures showing that a cyclist would need to take 364,000 journeys by bicycle before being killed or seriously injured, compared with 400,000 trips in 2008.
Mr Johnson conceded: “Admittedly, we have a larger number of people currently being injured and I am concerned about that.”