10 by 2020 ~ Cycling Safety Challenge

The “10 by 2020” London Mayoral Cycling Safety Challenge put to candidates in the 2016 GLA election – see our press release HERE.

Link to this page: StopTheKilling.org.uk/10by2020
Facebook discussion cyber-event: click HERE.

Replies from candidates: RESPONSES

Click on each heading to read more details and background:

1. 10% BY 2020

Will you commit to investing 10% of TfL budget on cycling infrastructure by 2020, building up each year from current minuscule 1.4%?

2. END HGV/BUS BLIND SPOT

Will you require full blind-spot safety equipment (Left Hand Side CCTV and alarms) to be installed in all existing and new HGVs, buses, coaches and Tipper Trucks entering London?

3. MINI-HOLLANDS FOR ALL

Will you fund a Mini-Holland Programme for all London Boroughs within your first term?

4. PHYSICALLY PROTECTED CYCLE-LANES

Will you support a comprehensive grid of Go-Dutch standard physically protected cycle-routes across the TfL road network to enable people of all ages and abilities to cycle safely?

5. LONDON 20 MPH ZONE

Will you support a 20mph speed limit across London (excluding motorways)?

6. SAFER LEFT HAND TURNS: EMERGENCY PROGRAMME + IDAHO LAW

Will you support the introduction of the Idaho law, allowing cyclists to turn left when traffic is free at junctions, with full legal priority for pedestrians, when doing so and support an emergency programme of installing safe protected left-hand turns at a minimum of the 500 junctions that were originally promised to be reviewed by Boris Johnson by the end of your first term? (NB These were subsequently cut to 33)

7. END LETHAL TIME PRESSURES ON BUSES/TIPPER TRUCKS

Will you end the lethal paid by timed delivery regimes for HGVs in the construction industry and end dangerous system of paying for bus performance by contracted Excess Waiting Time Targets?

8. SQUARES AND STREETS FIT FOR HUMANS

Will you support a programme of making our beautiful major squares and shopping streets fit for humans, by closing them to motorised transport, including:
Oxford Street,
Trafalgar Square,
Piccadilly,
Parliament Square,
Bank Junction, etc ?

9. TWO TfL BOARD PLACES FOR CYCLISTS

Will you appoint two cycling representatives to the TfL Board, nominated by cycling groups and change its name to the London Cycling, Walking and Transport Authority?

10. TIPPER TRUCK BAN

Will you ban tipper trucks at rush hour and introduce a scheme whereby electric delivery trucks to bring in goods from HGVs parked in outer London, into central London and promote cargo bikes for last mile deliveries.


Details:

1. 10% BY 2020

Will you commit to investing 10% of TfL budget on cycling infrastructure by 2020, building up each year from current minuscule 1.4%?

The Dutch spend £24 per person per year on cycling infrastructure. TfL currently spend approximately £82 million per year, which equates to £9.90 per person. The ten year cycling plan announced a budget of £913 million, which due to London’s rapidly increasing population means that spending per person will basically remain frozen.

If we spent at Dutch levels per person, the expenditure would be £200 million but the Dutch already have been investing in a safety infrastructure since the 1970s.

Thus to deliver Dutch standards across the TfL and Borough networks, investment needs to be at least triple their current budget or 10% of TfL budget.

To understand how derisory the current annual capital expenditure on cycling is, it should be compared to the £500 million Bank Tube station refurbishment, the equivalent of 0.5% of the £16,000 million single CrossRail project cost or 0.25% of the £30 billion cost of the 22 mile proposed daft new single 22 mile ring-road.

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2. END HGV/BUS BLIND SPOT

Will you require full blind-spot safety equipment (Left Hand Side CCTV and alarms) to be installed in all existing and new HGVs, buses, coaches and Tipper Trucks entering London?

Seven out of the eight people killed on bicycles in 2015 in London, were killed by Tipper Trucks and HGVs. 9 out of 14 were killed in 2014.

A positive first step in making these trucks safer is being introduced on September 1st, when all trucks entering London will have to have modern safety mirrors which reduce the size of the blind-spot.

But this only takes us half-way. Trucks and buses should all have full complement of safety equipment, to reduce these awful cruel killings, whilst encouraging the speeding up the introduction of fully safety re-designed Tipper Trucks to reform the fleet.

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3. MINI-HOLLANDS FOR ALL

Will you fund a Mini-Holland Programme for all London Boroughs within your first term?

There is a mini-Holland scheme running currently in only four Boroughs.

Most Londoners do not realise that 94% of London’s roads are managed by the thirty two London Boroughs.

Research by Stop Killing Cyclists in 2014 revealed that:
• 13 London Boroughs have ZERO segregated cycle-lanes;
• 24 London Boroughs installed ZERO cycle lanes since the previous London elections in 2010.
• Only 3 boroughs installed any segregated cycle lanes since the last election: Ealing (£400,000), Camden (£320,000), Waltham Forest (£400,000).
• The sum total spent by all boroughs over previous 4 years on segregated cycle lanes was a tiny £0.795 million. This equated to a miniscule £7,000 per borough per year since last election.

It is crucial therefore that the next London Mayor facilitates a step change in safer cycling infrastructure investment at Borough level, if we are to bring London up to Go Dutch standards as quickly as possible to save countless lives from inactivity diseases, pollution and collision killings by funding a Mini-Holland programme for all 32 Boroughs, rather than the token programme of 4 at the moment.

Many key Borough decision makers are stuck in lethal 1950’s motorised transport thinking. Southwark’s current Head of Transport Simon Bevan, in 2012 publicly and in policy terms opposed segregated cycle lanes and called for the use of cyclists to slow traffic instead! Westminster’s Head of Transport Martin Low is opposing safer segregated major junctions like Lambeth Bridge. The City of London, Hackney and Westminster Councils have opposed segregated cycle-lanes.

TfL needs to call for an urgent cycling summit between all the Heads of Borough Transport Departments and the cycling bodies.

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4. PHYSICALLY PROTECTED CYCLE-LANES

Will you support a comprehensive grid of Go-Dutch standard physically protected cycle-routes across the TfL road network to enable people of all ages and abilities to cycle safely?

The Dutch have adopted five principles of “sustainable safety” which are designed to prevent crashes, or at the very least, prevent serious injury in those that do occur. This proactive approach takes into account the physical vulnerability of pedestrians and cyclists, as well as the cognitive capabilities and limitations that so often contribute toward crashes (SWOV, 2012). While some principles are already incorporated into UK road design, such as the predictability of road design, other principles are not currently accommodated for. Thus, adopting these principles could be an important step in making cycling (and walking) safer and more appealing, thereby increasing their modal share. Table below, reproduced from a SWOV factsheet, lists the five principles of “sustainable safety”; more information on the subject can be obtained by reading the relevant document in the reference list.

Sustainable Safety Principle Description
Functionality of roads Mono-functionality of roads as either through-roads, distributor roads, or access roads in a hierarchically structured road network
Homogeneity of mass and/or speed and direction Equality of speed, direction, and mass at moderate and high speeds
Predictability of road course and road user behaviour by a recognizable road design Road environment and road user behaviour that support road user expectations through consistency and continuity of road design
Forgivingness of the environment and of road users Injury limitation through a forgiving road environment and anticipation of road user behaviour
State awareness by the road user Ability to assess one’s capacity to handle the driving task

We need a FULL, integrated, safely designed, segregated cycle network on TfL’s roads in London within 5 years.
A segregated cycle network alongside major or busy roads, combined with filtered permeability (Quiet Ways) on minor roads, would go a long way in increasing cycle accessibility to those currently excluded in London. It would increase both actual and perceived safety, thus eliminating one of the biggest barriers to cycling in London. This network should be integrated with public transport, and provide ample cycle parking, a combination that Pucher, Dill, and Handy (2010) say is key to ensuring the success of city cycling.

The most useful measure of all would be the implementation of Dutch quality segregated cycle paths, along with separate or advance staging for cycle traffic on these paths. While separate bicycle stage signals will require time at junctions with high saturation flows, increased cycle mode share and reduced car use would compensate for this over time.

Perceived safety is very important in getting people onto bikes. Perceived risk associated with cycling on busy roads was one of the main reasons given in the UK for not using one’s bike more often (Pooley et al., 2011). Furthermore, it is exactly the groups mentioned – children, the elderly, as well as women – who are most risk averse, and this risk aversion is likely the main reason for the under-representation of these groups cycling in London (Steinbach et al., 2011; Garrard, Rose, and Lo, 2008).

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5. LONDON 20 MPH ZONE

Will you support a 20mph speed limit across London (excluding motorways)?

TfL should immediately introduce 20 mph speed limit for its road network and for all its contracted buses on all Borough road networks.

It should also work with the 32 Boroughs to introduce a consistent 20mph speed limit across London asap. Pedestrians and cyclists have a significantly higher chance of escaping being killed or seriously injured if hit by a vehicle travelling at 20mph rather than 30mph.

The most recent analysis of the role of vehicle speed in pedestrian fatalities in Great Britain, found that 85% of pedestrians killed when struck by cars or car-derived vans, died in collision that occurred at impact speeds below 40mph, 45% at less than 30 mph and 5% at speeds below 20 mph.

A review of crash data in seventy-two 20 mph zones found that average mean speeds were reduced by 9 mph, from 25 mph to 16 mph in the zones. On average, for every 1 mph speed reduction, there was a 6.2% crash reduction.

All road crashes in the zones fell by 61%, and there was no evidence of crash migration onto surrounding roads. Traffic flows in the zones reduced by 27%. The effects were particularly significant for the most vulnerable road users:

• All pedestrian crashes down by 63%
• All cyclist crashes down by 29%
• Motorcyclist crashes down by 73%
• Child crashes down by 67%
• Child pedestrian crashes down by 70%
• Child cyclist crashes down by 48%

A Transport for London review of over one hundred 20 mph zones in London also found that they were very effective in reducing road injuries to children. In the zones, speeds were reduced by 9 mph and traffic flows by about 15%. Road casualties in the zones were reduced by 45% and fatal or seriously injured casualties by 57%.

Again, significant protection was provided to the most vulnerable road users:

• Pedestrian casualties down by 40%, and pedestrians killed or seriously injured (KSI) down by 50%
• Child pedestrian casualties down by 48% and child pedestrians KSI down by 61%
• Cyclist casualties down by 33% and cyclist KSI down by 50%
• Child cyclist casualties down by 59% and child cyclists KSI down by 60%
• Car occupant casualties down by 57% car occupant KSI down by 77%
• Child car occupant casualties down by 51% child KSI down by 47%

TfL also needs to lobby ACPO for enforcement of 20 mph speed limits. This is because a shocking 48% of drivers regularly exceed legal speed limits. Recent research revealed that there are three classifications of drivers:

• Compliant drivers who usually observe speed limits (52% of drivers)
• Moderate speeders who occasionally exceed speed limits (33% of drivers)
• Excessive speeders who routinely exceed speed limits (14% of drivers)

However, even the moderate speeders exceed 30 mph limits fairly regularly. Excessive speeders normally ignore the 30 mph limit, and often by a wide margin. This shows the need for the Mayor to instruct the Metropolitan Police to increase their speed enforcement levels.

Pedestrian Injury Severity Based on Vehicle Speed:

Pedestrian Injury Severity Based on Vehicle Speed.
Pedestrian Injury Severity Based on Vehicle Speed.

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6. SAFER LEFT HAND TURNS: EMERGENCY PROGRAMME + IDAHO LAW

Will you support the introduction of the Idaho law, allowing cyclists to turn left when traffic is free at junctions, with full legal priority for pedestrians, when doing so and support an emergency programme of installing safe protected left-hand turns at a minimum of the 500 junctions that were originally promised to be reviewed by Boris Johnson by the end of your first term? (NB These were subsequently cut to 33)

The Idaho law would allow cyclists to turn left when traffic is free at junctions, with full legal priority for pedestrians.

An emergency programme of installing safe protected left-hand turns is needed, at a minimum of the 500 junctions that were originally promised to be reviewed by Boris Johnson by the end of next mayor’s first term.

This would increase safety for cyclists by allowing filtered left-hand-turns (i.e. changing the junctions to “Yield Right of Way” designation for cyclists, to become standard design at junctions, with top priority for pedestrians.

All dangerous junctions need to be redesigned to Dutch standards as soon as possible.

The current Mayor promised to address the 500 most dangerous junctions, then reduced this to 50 and then to 33, of which only a handful actually have started being made safer. This means that there are literally thousands of dangerous junctions in London putting people cycling at risk of being crushed horribly by HGV trucks, as they turn left.

For signalised junctions, this includes the provision of separate signals for bicycles (on the same stage as pedestrians if in parallel), kerb protected left-hand-turns as well as the provision of segregated paths on busy roads that allow the safe bypassing of T-junctions and allowing left-on-red without ever interacting with other vehicles, thus reducing travel times as an added benefit.

Left hand turns would also be safer if the mayor required Compulsory Cycle Awareness training for all truck/bus companies operating in London.

This will ensure raised awareness of bicycles and their vulnerability to drivers of HGVs and buses, especially during the interim period while better infrastructure is being constructed.

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7. END LETHAL TIME PRESSURES ON BUSES/TIPPER TRUCKS

Will you end the lethal paid by timed delivery regimes for HGVs in the construction industry and end dangerous system of paying for bus performance by contracted Excess Waiting Time Targets?

Contracts based on strict adherence to strictly-measured (usually time-based) performance regimes are common to the construction industry and TfL Bus Contracts. These contracts provide incentives for operators to deliver a specific number of loads or, in the case of TfL buses, maintain a predictable pattern of arrivals at bus stops within a certain time period.

While this type of performance contracting is suitable for the rail industry (where the right-of-way is guaranteed, the transport path is generally unshared and outside interactions are both monitored and regulated) they are completely unsuitable for any commercial user that is compelled to share the road with others.

TfL Bus Drivers have identified the Excess Time Indicator (EWT) Target as a particularly onerous contract term that places overwhelming pressure on Bus Drivers to take risks and divert driver attention to make “Headway” (i.e., to ensure the bus is evenly spaced between the bus before and after it so as to avoid heavy contract penalties). At present EWT Targets are the only bus-related Key Performance Indicator (KPI) reflected in both TfL Bus Contracts and the Performance-related bonuses paid annually to TfL Managers. That both TfL Subcontractors and TfL Managers should benefit from a Contract Performance Measure that TfL Bus Drivers have identified as danger-causing is not only a conflict of interest, but it calls into question the integrity of TfL’s approach to Bus Safety.

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8. SQUARES AND STREETS FIT FOR HUMANS

Will you support a programme of making our beautiful major squares and shopping streets fit for humans, by closing them to motorised transport, including:
Oxford Street,
Trafalgar Square,
Piccadilly,
Parliament Square,
Bank Junction, etc ?

Above all, cities should be places fit for humans. Therefore, for a city to be healthy in all respects, it must focus on the wellbeing of people. Making streets safe and friendly for pedestrians and cyclists is good for business and tourism and helps promote an atmosphere of socialising and easy mobility rather than one of fear and negative emotions where people do not want to spend time (Mehta, 2013).

Oxford Street is Europe’s ‘busiest shopping street’ (Daily Telegraph, 2 August 2010), yet is also the most dangerous in the London in terms of collisions (35 times higher than the average London Street according to the GLA’s “Streets Ahead” Report) resulting in, since April 2010, an average of over four vehicle-pedestrian reported collisions per month, around two of which involve buses, and a pedestrian is seriously injured about every month-and-a-half.

Since April 2010, buses have been involved in sixty percent of the collisions resulting serious injury on Oxford Street.
Other cities around the world, from New York to Paris, have been converting busy pedestrian/traffic areas into pedestrian-only zones; for example, Times Square has already been partially pedestrianised, with further improvements being started (CBS, 2013). This pedestrianising of the area has already proved hugely popular, with increased store sales being reported (New York Times).

Where provision for traffic and space for safe walking and cycling are in conflict, TfL must change its current lethal policy to one of prioritising vulnerable road users.

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9. TWO TfL BOARD PLACES FOR CYCLISTS

Will you appoint two cycling representatives to the TfL Board, nominated by cycling groups and change its name to the London Cycling, Walking and Transport Authority?

The current TfL Board composition is not fit for purpose.

The active participation of cycling and pedestrian organisation representatives in TfL board meetings would help ensure that cycling/pedestrian issues become a priority in decision-making. More informed decisions will be possible with regards to projects ranging from train station upgrades through to roadwork management, keeping cycle provision in mind at all stages.

Pedestrians likewise deserve representation. Our 2014 analysis of the current TfL board composition revealed:
5 bankers/big business, 2 taxi reps, 2 aviation industry, 1 HGV, 3 Conservative Politicians, 1 trade unionist and 1 disabled person.

We need cyclist board members in order to press for the ending of TfL’s disastrous policy of prioritising smooth flow and speed of traffic and instead adopt policy of placing safety of vulnerable road users – cyclists, pedestrians and children at the top of the Mayor’s transport hierarchy.

Given the huge benefits of walking and cycling in terms of reducing obesity, lessening air pollution, improving mental health, increasing social equality, reducing congestion, and even improving sales for local businesses that lie along cycle routes, the idea of continuing a traffic-engineering based approach that focuses solely on maximising hourly PCUs through an intersection, and reducing travel time for motorists, is akin to trying to put out a fire with petrol.

Priorities must be stated, and goals must be set – a transport department in a city that has its priorities focussed on the movement of motor traffic, rather than the movement of people, is one that is in dereliction of duty in adequately performing its role. The focus of enabling mobility in a city must be on active and public transport. While the latter has been achieved well in London, the former is sorely lacking.

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10. TIPPER TRUCK BAN

Will you ban tipper trucks at rush hour and introduce a scheme whereby electric delivery trucks to bring in goods from HGVs parked in outer London, into central London and promote cargo bikes for last mile deliveries?

Seven out of the eight terrible cyclist killings so far in 2015 have been by HGV and tipper trucks.

Tipper trucks due to the high-danger they present to cyclists should be banned at rush hour and the Mayor should introduce a scheme whereby electric delivery trucks to bring in goods from HGVs parked in outer London, into central London and promote cargo bikes for last mile deliveries.

Stop Killing Cyclists want a ban on any vehicles whose drivers cannot see adjacent road-users. Children, pensioners and inexperienced adults should not be forced to share space with HGVs.

There are two very good reasons for this, as well as some proven steps to prevent such interaction from occurring. The main concern is that the sharing of road space between HGVs, buses, and cyclists results in negative impacts upon both actual and perceived safety.
The London rate of cycle deaths (2.2 deaths per 100 million km cycled) greatly exceeds that of the national rate in the Netherlands (1.1 deaths per 100 million km) or Germany (1.6 deaths per 100 million km) (Department of Transport UK, Buehler and Pucher, 2012).

London has the highest KSI rates (70/100 million km cycled) in the country for cyclists, with it being 35% higher than the South-West. (UK Department of Transport).

HGVs and Buses are also responsible for 25 percent of serious injuries to cyclists in London each year (RoSPA 2013).
The use of side detection technologies (cameras, radar) in the blind spot of large vehicles must become compulsory. We need also to reduce unnecessary transport e.g. returning waste transport to barges.

It is crucial to crack down on the shocking levels of trucks being driven illegally or in an illegally dangerous condition on London’s streets. A recent Metropolitan Police action found over 70% of trucks stopped to be breaking the safety laws. The estimated total figure is about 30%.

This urgently needs to be prioritised with a target of 99% found to be compliant with existing safety laws.

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References

Buehler, R. and Pucher, J., 2012. International Overview: Cycling Trends in Western Europe, North America, and Australia. In: Pucher, J. and Buhler, R. eds., 2012. City Cycling. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.

CBS, 2013. Bloomberg Unveils Redesign Of Times Square Pedestrian Plaza. [online] 23 December.

CROW, 2007. Design manual for bicycle traffic. Ede, The Netherlands: CROW.

Garrard, J., Rose, G. and Lo, S.K., 2008. Promoting transportation cycling for women: The role of bicycle infrastructure. Preventative Medicine, (46) pp. 55-59.

Greater London Authority (GLA), 2011. The Future of Road Congestion in London. [pdf]

Mehta, V., 2013. The Street. New York, NY: Routledge.

Miller, 2010. Report on estimation of mortality impacts of particulate air pollution in London. [pdf] Institute of Occupational Medicine.

Pooley, C. et al, 2011. Understanding walking and cycling: summary of key findings and recommendations, [online]

Pucher, J., Dill, J. and Handy, S., 2010. Infrastructure, programs, and policies to increase bicycling: An international review. Preventative Medicine, (50) pp. S106-S125.

Steinbach, R., Green, J., Datta, J. and Edwards, P., 2011. Cycling and the city: A case study of how gendered, ethnic, and class identities can shape healthy transport choices. Social Science & Medicine, (72) pp. 1123-1130.

SWOV, 2012.  SWOV Fact sheet – Background of the five Sustainable Safety principles. [pdf]

Speed/Fatality Graph:  http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/pssp/background/psafety.cfm

Walker, P., 2013. London: no city for cyclists. Guardian.co.uk Bike blog, [blog] 3 December.

 

— Contributions by David Hicks, Tom Kearney, Donnachadh McCarthy and Will Nickells.


 

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