Protest in Bow for cyclists’ safety after another death

Cyclist Protest. Pic: Andreas Kambanis

Cyclist Protest. Pic: Andreas Kambanis

London Cyclists will hold a protest tonight in Bow in reaction to the increasing number of cycling fatalities in London.

The demonstration will take place at the site where a female was killed in a collision this morning, the fourth cyclist death in London in eight days.

The unnamed woman, believed to be in her 20s, was dragged under a truck after a collision at Bow Roundabout at 8:45am.

A spokeswoman for the London ambulance service said: “We were called at 8.45 this morning to a road traffic collision involving a lorry and a cyclist near the Bow roundabout … Sadly, the cyclist was dead at the scene. The driver of the lorry was assessed at the scene but did not need to go to hospital.”

The protest, organised by the London Cycling Campaign, starts at 6pm this evening at Bow Roundabout. It follows a similar protest which was attended by 2,000 people in High Holborn in July, that marked the death of three cyclists in three weeks.

The campaign released a statement in response to this morning’s incident: “Today, we’ve been inundated with calls, emails and messages of condolences for the families, as well as a huge sense of shock and frustration at the lack of action to implement measures that protect cyclists and pedestrians at Bow.”

On what has been the latest spate of cycling deaths in the capital, further bad news followed, today two more cyclists were left seriously injured in hospital after incidents in Westminster and Millbank.

Wednesday morning’s tragedy followed the death of a 40-year-old-cyclist in Croydon on Tuesday, following a collision with a bus. While last week, cyclists Francis Golding and Brian Holt died following collisions in Holborn and Mile End, respectively.

London Assembly Green Party member and Lewisham Councillor Darren Johnson has questioned Mayor Boris Johnson over the safety of London cyclists in the past and has been left increasingly frustrated following the latest deaths.

“The Mayor’s failure to make roads safer for cycling, in the last six years, is the reason we are having so many tragedies now. The Mayor has been in complete denial about the scale of the problem and his personal responsibility for dealing with it.”

He added: “His repeated talk of our roads getting safer does not match the reality, especially when there is no obvious plan or timetable for action.”

Johnson called for London Mayor Boris Johnson to drop his policy of smoothing traffic flow, which he claims puts the needs of motorists before the safety of cyclists.

In response to this morning’s fatality, Boris Johnson said: “Any death on London’s roads is a tragedy and my thoughts are with the families and friends of the cyclists who have lost their lives. In the past decade, the number of cyclists in the capital has almost trebled and it is absolutely vital that we continue to invest huge sums of money into making cycling infrastructure as safe as possible.”

The Mayor continued: “I’ve committed almost £1bn to doing just that, with major improvements being made to junctions and superhighways across London and plans to ensure HGV lorries not fitted with safety equipment will face charges. More work is under way and they are being done as quickly as possible. This is an absolute priority for me, my team and TfL.”

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