|Mary Macleod Calls for Cycling Summit|
MP led Westminster Hall debate on safe cycling
Local MP, Mary Macleod led a cross-party debate yesterday (26th November) in Parliament on safe cycling in London.
Mary hosted this discussion in response to six cyclist deaths in two weeks during the month of November in London. There have been fourteen cycling fatalities in total so far this year, the same number as in 2012.
The number of journeys made by bike doubled between 2000 and 2012 to over 540,000 per day, so Mary is concerned that London needs to become safer for cyclists so that deaths can be prevented.
During the debate, Mary noted the merits of cycling and the importance of encouraging people to cycle, but stressed the importance of finding a way to make it safer for everyone on the roads. She also spoke about the options available to make cycling safer, such as better safety equipment on lorries and the installation of Trixi mirrors at road junctions to provide drivers of heavy goods vehicles with improved visibility. At the end of the discussion, Mary called for a cycling safety summit in London to address this issue.
Commenting, Mary said: ‘I organised this debate in Parliament because I felt it was important to have a discussion on what can be done to increase safety for cyclists, especially in the wake of six cycling fatalities that have taken place in the space of two weeks in London. Although the Mayor and City Hall have introduced a number of positive developments for cyclists in London in recent years, fourteen deaths is fourteen too many. I am calling for the Mayor, Transport for London, the Department of Transport and local Councils to meet urgently and come up with priority actions that need to be taken to make cycling safer in London.’
Ruth Cadbury who will contest the Brentford and Isleworth seat for Labour at the next election said, "If she is serious about increasing cycling Mary needs to remember that, after years of increased investment and improved safety figures, her Government cut funding for road safety, scrapped Cycling England and its £60m budget, and axed targets to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on our road.
"I wish Mary had condemned Boris Johnson for effectively blaming cyclists for the accidents when the evidence shows that usually drivers and road design are to blame. She should have urged Boris to make all the Cycle Superhighways fully segregated, and integrated with other cycle routes."
She added that she looked forward to discussing this issue with Mary soon.
Responding to the debate, Robert Goodwill MP, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, said: “I thank my honourable friend the Member for Brentford and Isleworth (Mary Macleod) for securing the debate, which comes after a series of fatal accidents involving cyclists on the capital’s roads in recent weeks”.
“It is important that we work together with all the stakeholders involved, including the cycling campaign groups and the all-party group on cycling, of which I used to be a member.”
November 27, 2013