A new campaign designed to keep cyclists safe as autumn returns follows a summer of cycling sporting success which has seen a rise in cyclist numbers, dubbed the ‘Wiggins Effect’.
A new study commissioned to coincide with the launch of the Department for Transport’s (DfT) new Think Cyclist campaign which calls on drivers and cyclists to stay safe this autumn by looking out for each other, found that 25 per cent of UK adults have noticed there are more cyclists on the road, after UK’s cycling success in the Olympic and Paralympic Games as well as Bradley Wiggins’ win of the Tour De France.
The new Think! safety campaign’s research also found that 80 per cent of cyclists hold a driving licence and that 1 in 5 drivers cycles at least once a month, meaning that cyclists and drivers are often one and the same people.
The Think Cyclist poll showed that cyclists and drivers agree that they should look out for each other in order to make cycling safer.
Looking twice for each other when turning or at junctions came out top for both as the precaution that would avoid the most collisions (41 per cent of regular cyclists, and 35 per cent of regular car drivers).
Both also agree on how to make things better, with 67 per cent of cyclists and 59 per cent of drivers saying that giving each other space on the road was in their top three ways of making cyclists and drivers more visible to road users.
Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond said:“ We take the issue of cycle safety extremely seriously so we are launching ‘Think Cyclist’, a campaign aimed at both cyclists and drivers.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “The safety of London’s road users is an absolute priority for me and improved cycle safety in particular is at the heart of all our work. So with ever more Londoners taking to the streets on two wheels, many inspired by our amazing summer of sport, the Think Cyclist campaign is a timely reminder of the need for road users to respect each other and make the city a safer place.”
As autumn sets in and the days become shorter and darker, the conditions for cycling are less favourable than during the summer. But with a timely reminder of the safety essentials should help keep cyclists safe and continue cycling through winter.
More safety tips and details of the campaign are available from www.direct.gov.uk/thinkcyclist.
Faye has been writing about cars and environmental issues since 2007. A suspected eco-warrior working on the corporate inside, Faye mainly likes the weird, quirky vehicles that show a distinct environmental advantage. Her ideal car has enough room to fit a bale of hay in the boot. When not working, she likes nothing better than to head out on her bicycle and explore the countryside.
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