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MAG wins TfL agreement to review threats to rider safety

News from the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG)

MAG wins TfL agreement to review threats to rider safety.

London transport bosses have agreed to review threats to rider safety.
Transport for London (TfL) will carry out a series of site visits at
critical points across London that – The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG)
says - are threatening riders' safety.

Motorcyclist fatalities in London have risen by more than 40% over the
past two years, from 22 in 2018 to 31 in 2019.  Provisional figures for
2020 show no decline despite vastly reduced traffic levels during the
pandemic.  MAG claims that poor road design is partly to blame.
Heidi Alexander, Deputy Mayor for Transport, agreed a series of site
meetings with MAG.

TfL will meet riders at locations which, MAG says, are typical of many
potential accident blackspots around the capital. Sites include Hyde
Park Corner, Farringdon Road, and Old Street. MAG is finalising a
schedule and the visits will go ahead as soon as possible.

Lembit Opik, MAG’s Director of Communications, said:

“This is a significant step forward. Until now, riders in London have
felt disenfranchised.  Their views are as valid as any other road
user’s. We can discuss statistics whilst sat in meeting rooms for as
long as we like, but it's the lived experience of the user that was
being forgotten. We believe riders’ interests have been neglected, and
the high number of deaths is the outcome of that neglect; something we
can now address. Compared to the millions poured into cycle safety, it
is hard to find any evidence of equivalent investment in the safety of
motorcyclists.”

Greater London Authority Assembly Member and Conservative Transport
Spokesman, Keith Prince, chaired the meeting. He observed:
“This meeting led to actual agreements so that motorcyclists are treated
with parity of esteem by the London authorities. I'm pleased we made
this concrete agreement for sensible engagement that’s data driven and
time efficient. So, at last, riders are included in London transport
discussions on an equitable basis.”

Additionally, MAG is urging TfL to implement the recommendations in its
own Urban Motorcycle Design Handbook, published in 2017. MAG says that
TfL's 'excellent' handbook offers potentially life-saving road design
changes - but asks where these have been implemented. It is also asking
TfL to persuade London's 33 boroughs to follow the design guide - and to
harmonise the 'confusing' pattern of bus lane usage by motorcyclists.

Colin Brown, MAG’s Director of Campaigns & Political Engagement, said:
“We plan to set a precedent for real progress in London and this will
become a template for action across the country.  All local authorities
can – and should -appoint dedicated motorcycling officers.  These
officers, just like cycling officers, should be charged with making
motorcycling safer and more accessible.  They should be accountable to
motorcyclists.”

During the meeting, MAG called on TfL to carry out detailed assessment
of recent road schemes on motorcycle safety, as riders can face higher
risks from such schemes as 'pop-up' cycle lanes and Low Traffic
Neighbourhoods.  MAG is also asking TfL to use its influence to improve
conditions for gig economy riders.

Colin Brown concluded:

“We view this meeting as a further step in an ongoing process of
dialogue.  It is certainly not the end of our efforts.  We hope to make
further progress on these other important points we are calling for in
the coming months.  Success in London will naturally lead to progress
for all bikers throughout the country."



ENDS
Contact MAG at 01926 844 064 or central-office@mag-uk.org


 

 

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