Government launches ‘urgent review’ into cycle safety
The Government has launched a review to consider whether a new offence equivalent to causing death by careless or dangerous driving should be introduced for cyclists.
The DfT announced the review following a series of high profile incidents involving cyclists.
Earlier this year the prime minster Theresa May hinted that the Government was considering new legislation to tackle dangerous cycling, following the trial of cyclist Charlie Alliston who knocked over and killed a female pedestrian, Kim Briggs.
Mr Alliston - whose fixed gear bike had no front brakes - was convicted under the 19th century offence of ‘wanton or furious driving’, and earlier this week was sentenced to 18 months in prison.
The Government review will look at whether a new offence equivalent to causing death by careless or dangerous driving should be introduced for cyclists, as well as wider improvements for cycling road safety issues.
Jesse Norman, transport minister, said: “It’s great that cycling has become so popular in recent years but we need to make sure that our road safety rules keep pace with this change.
“We have strict laws that ensure that drivers who put people’s lives at risk are punished but, given recent cases, it is only right for us to look at whether dangerous cyclists should face the same consequences.
“We’ve seen the devastation that reckless cycling and driving can cause, and this review will help safeguard both Britain’s cyclists and those who share the roads with them.
The review will be in two phases.
The first phase will analyse the case for creating a new offence equivalent to causing death or serious injury by careless or dangerous driving to help protect both cyclists and pedestrians. The conclusions from this phase are expected in early 2018.
The second phase will be a wider consultation on road safety issues relating to cycling. It will involve a range of road safety and cycling organisations, as well as the general public and will consider different ways in which safety can be further improved between cyclists, pedestrians and motorists.
The DfT says further details of the review will be announced shortly.