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Cycling lawyer welcomes London Mayor's plans to make roads safer in the capital

An expert in cycling-related injuries has welcomed plans by the London Mayor to make the city’s roads safer by banning thousands of potentially dangerous lorries

Lorry mirror

30 September 2016

An expert in cycling-related injuries has welcomed London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s plans to make the city’s roads safer for cyclists by banning thousands of potentially dangerous lorries from its roads.

The mayor has announced plans which would see heavy good vehicles (HGVs) given a star rating from one to five depending on  how good the visibility is from the driver’s cab. Those that score zero, which currently stands at 35,000, would be banned from London’s roads by 2020 if the plans come into force. Furthermore, those lorries with less than three stars would be banned from the roads by 2024.

The mayor's office said that over the past two years HGVs were involved in 23% of pedestrian fatalities and 58% of cyclist deaths in London, despite accounting for just 4% of the miles driven in the city.

Mr Khan said: "I'm not prepared to stand by and let dangerous lorries continue to cause further heartbreak and tragedy on London's roads.

"The evidence is clear - HGVs have been directly involved in over half of cycling fatalities over the last two years, and we must take bold action to make our roads safer for both cyclists and pedestrians.

"I'm determined to ensure the most dangerous zero star-rated lorries are removed from our roads completely by 2020."

Mr Khan added that he hopes the plans will result in many lorries being upgraded to having better visibility before the ban comes in to force and that Transport for London and the Greater London Authority would lead by example by ensuring HGVs used in their supply chains have good all-round visibility.

Grant Incles, solicitor at Leigh Day, leads the firm’s cycling and sports injury team in London. He said: “I am saddened to read those statistics but so pleased to hear that the Mayor is taking strong steps to address poor visibility in what appears to be part of a genuine push to make the roads of our capital safer.

“Lorries that restrict a driver’s visibility are a threat to the safety of all road users but the statistics show that it is cyclists who are the most vulnerable.

“It is essential that drivers of HGVs are provided the best possible vision all around their vehicles to help prevent needless deaths and serious injuries. It is a very important part of the solution along with better driver awareness training and, of course, better cycling infrastructure”

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