The Government has today (9 March) published its ‘Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy: Safety Review’. The call for evidence is on ways to make cycling and walking safer and forms part of the wider consultation on road safety issues related to cycling - phase 2 of the Cycle Safety Review, announced in September 2017.

Living Streets has been working with the Department for Transport, alongside cycling and road safety organisations, and has lobbied successfully for this review to be widened to include pedestrian safety.

Joe Irvin, CEO, Living Streets comments: 

“We need to encourage people to walk and cycle more to improve public health and to tackle inactivity, congestion and air pollution.

“Everyone should feel safe and be safe using our streets, so we’re pleased to see the Government has widened the scope of its safety review to include people walking, as well as those cycling.

“We will continue working with fellow active travel organisations and the Department to make walking and cycling the natural choices for everyday journeys, helping fulfil the Government’s vision for a healthier society.”

This announcement comes at the same time as a report, commissioned by the Department for Transport, recommending that there is a case for a new offence to be introduced to tackle dangerous cycling. If this were to be introduced, it would bring cycling in line with driving offences.  

Joe Irvin continues: 

“Everyone who uses our roads should respect the law and respect the safety of others. There is a potential gap in the law concerning death by dangerous cycling. But the Government must focus on what will make the biggest difference and tackle all road danger at source.  

“448 pedestrians were killed on Britain’s roads in 2016; over 99 per cent of these deaths caused by a collision with a motor vehicle.[1]  So bikes are not the main problem. 

“The current justice system is simply not an effective deterrent to dangerous behaviour.”

You can respond to the Call for Evidence here.

Consultation closes 11:45pm on 1 June 2018. Living Streets will be sharing its response here shortly.

[1] <1% of pedestrian fatalities caused by someone cycling, 62% by cars (the remainder being lorries, motorcycles etc).