Red alert for London cyclists

700 32-ton lorries visiting London Bridge building site this weekend

by nick_rearden   April 16, 2010  

London Concrete lorry & bikes.jpg

The London Cycling Campaign (LCC) has issued a warning to London cyclists that 700 heavy concrete mixer trucks are this weekend scheduled to visit The Shard building site near London Bridge Station.

Starting during this evening's rush hour - oh joy - and lasting for 36 hours, almost 700 return lorry trips will continuously pour 12,500 tons of concrete into the foundations of Europe's largest building site.

The LCC are concerned that building lorries are among the most hazardous for cyclists; only last month a cyclist was killed in a collision with a tipper lorry from The Shard building site.

All cyclists in the central London area, particularly south of the river around London Bridge, are warned to take extra care this Friday evening, all day Saturday, and Sunday morning. The lorries will be coming from concrete plants in Bow and Battersea.

Route details are on the LCC website here.

A spokesperson for The Shard's principal building contractors, Mace Group, told the LCC "Please be assured that the safety of cyclists, pedestrians and all road users has been treated very seriously in the planning - which has been ongoing for several weeks and has involved local authorities, Transport for London and immediate neighbours."

LCC lorry campaigner Charlie Lloyd said, "Around half of all cyclist deaths in London involve large lorries, even though there are relatively few on the road.

"This weekend's 36-hour rush creates an extra hazard. LCC is calling on the developers and transport companies to do everything they can to reduce the danger to cyclists and pedestrians."

Be careful out there, people.

2 user comments

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Interesting - my wife is taking the kids to see the London marathon this weekend and I'll be away - I'll tell her not to cycle.

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [1782 posts]
16th April 2010 - 8:57

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Bit late to tell your wife now, OldRidgeback, but the London Marathon is next weekend Wink

I was in London today, so I went over to London Bridge to see what was happening and took the picture above.

For those who don't know the area, this is the junction of Southwark Street and Borough High Street. The Shard site itself is just down the road to the right of the building with the pyramid-shaped roof.

At weekends, this junction is VERY busy with pedestrians and, yes, cyclists because of Borough Market (over the road to the left). The sunshine and the end of the Easter holidays brought a lot of people, including families with kids, as well as tourists, to the market.

With Borough High Street (to the right) closed southbound, the lorries - at least, I assume the ones going to and from the Battersea site - had to go down Southwark Street, taking them right past the market.

I would have expected to see traffic police out helping to ensure that everything ran smoothly and safely; apart from a couple of PCSOs wandering round the market, the only police I saw seemed to be checking up on football fans in the local pubs.

I probably saw an average of a lorry every couple of minutes going either to or from the site, and let's just say that not all the drivers seemed to be taking things particularly slowly through this junction and on into Southwark Street.

Let's just hope the weekend passes without incident.

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [7001 posts]
17th April 2010 - 22:47

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