Mayor of London launches Safer Lorry Scheme, but it doesn’t go far enough to protect vulnerable road users02 September 2015
Safer Lorry Scheme is not the answer to solving London’s cycling safety issues
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has launched the start of a Safer Lorry Scheme in a bid to reduce the number of HGVs involved in fatal accidents with cyclists, but many believe that it is not enough to stop accidents involving vulnerable road users.
The first phase of the Safer Lorry Scheme was launched yesterday (01 September 2015), and will see HGV operators face fines of up to £1,000 if they fail to fit mirrors to reduce a lorry’s blind spot and side bars to prevent cyclists from being dragged under the lorry’s wheels.
The second phase of safety measures will be open to public consultation next year and will include proposals to fit glass doors to lorries to reduce blind spots. Turning left is a particularly dangerous manoeuvre for lorries due to their blind spots so further proposals also include seeing planning applications for large developments containing restrictions on the routes that HGVs can take to limit the number of left-hand turns lorries make.
It is hoped that these measures will help to reduce the number of accidents involving HGVs. Currently lorries make up 5% of London’s traffic, but account for 50% of the fatalities.
Tom Jones, head of policy at Thompsons Solicitors, said: “Any scheme to reduce the number of accidents involving cyclists is welcome, however, this scheme is typical Boris puff and will be too long in coming to fruition. Meanwhile cyclists will continue to die. The Mayor is playing at the fringes when he has power to do far more.
“The reality is that the majority of HGVs already comply with the safer mirror system and the real target should be those lorry drivers who do not comply with existing regulations. Boris is not only Mayor but an MP too and could use his influence there to ensure there is a national strategy with proper funding of training for drivers and cyclists to encourage greater consideration between road users.
“Large-scale investment in improving out-dated infrastructure and making dangerous junctions safer is also desperately required not just jam tomorrow in new developments. Only with immediate action will we see a reduction in the number of accidents on London’s roads.”
Injured on the roads? Help and compensation is close at hand.
If you’ve been injured on the roads in the last three years, Thompsons Solicitors' expert road traffic accident solicitors can support you with making a road traffic compensation claim.
Whether you were the driver or passenger in a car, lorry, coach, van, bus, truck, on public transport or were injured as a pedestrian or cyclist, you may be able to claim for damages.
If you have suffered injuries such as whiplash, bruising or a more serious injury following a road traffic collision on the motorway, country lane or city roads, our solicitors across the UK are ready to help you to make a claim and access any rehabilitation you require.
Unlike other firms, Thompsons only ever acts for the injured person – never for insurance companies. This means we will fight harder to secure the maximum level of compensation for your injuries, and don’t need to please motor insurance paymasters.
Contact us today for a free, no obligation assessment of whether you have a claim for compensation following a road accident.
For further information, visit our How to Make A Compensation Claim page.