London's killer roundabout claims another cyclist as woman dies at Bow

Woman hit by truck in fifth Cycle Superhighway 2 fatality

by John Stevenson   November 13, 2013  

Broken bike (CC licensed image by garryknight, www.flickr.com)

The BBC reports that a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning.

The as-yet-unnamed woman was pronounced dead at the scene after being attended by London Ambulance Service. The crash happened at about 08:47 GMT.

In a statement, the Metropolitan Police said: "It is believed the lorry was travelling west along the A11, entering the roundabout to turn south towards the Blackwall Tunnel.

"The cyclist is believed to have been travelling in the same direction when the collision occurred.

"The male driver of the lorry stopped at the scene. There have been no arrests."

Ross Lydal of the Evening Standard reports that the woman was not actually on Cycle Superhighway 2 at the time. The notoriously dangerous route has recently been extended east of Bow Roundabout with a largely-segregated lane to Stratford.

Cyclist Robin Stephenson told the Standard about the aftermath of the crash which he saw as he rode over the Bow flyover on his way to work as an IT manager: “The traffic was backing up from Stratford High Street. I went over the flyover and saw a huge number of emergency services down there.

“I commute that way every weekday but don’t use the roundabout - I won’t use it. I go over the flyover rather than round the roundabout. The whole area is just dreadful. The only way that they will fix it is to have full segregation for cyclists.”

The London Cycling Campaign has announced a protest ride this evening at Bow roundabout, meeting at 6pm for 6.30. 

LCC's Chief Executive Ashok Sinha said, "Although we don't know the exact circumstances of today's crash, we know it happened just a few metres from where Svitlana Tereschenko was killed in 2011.

"It's unbelievable that we are, again, two years after that death, calling on Mayor Boris Johnson to install cycling and pedestrian-safe traffic lights at Bow roundabout to prevent more Londoners being killed.

"A cyclist-specific traffic lights were recommended by TfL's own consultants before Superhighway 2 was built, but the recommendations of expert consultants, cyclists and pedestrians have been ignored."

The Metropolitan Police are appealing for witnesses who should contact the witness appeal line on 020 8597 4747.

The woman is the fourth cyclist to die on London's roads in the last week, and the twelfth this year. 

Last Thursday hospital porter Brian Holt was killed when he was hit by a lorry on Cycle Superhighway 2 at Mile End. Hours later planning expert Francis Golding was hit by a coach in Holborn and died of his injuries the next day. Yesterday a 40-year-old man was killed when he was hit by a bus in Croydon.

Since it opened in 2011, three cyclists have died in collisions with trucks on  Cycle Superhighway 2, and three more have died very close to the route while apparently about to join it.

The first was Brian Dorling in 2011, followed just three weeks later by Svitlana Tereschenko, who while not technically on CS2 at the time was at Bow Roundabout, about to use the route to ride west.

French student Philippine De Gerin-Ricard was also hit by a tipper truck when she was killed on July 7 of this year, and on September 15 nursing assistant Maria Karsa was hit by a truck at the Aldgate gyratory, just before the western end of CS2. 

 

49 user comments

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I think most of these collisions have happened in daylight and clear conditions, so while I wouldn't dream of riding without lights at this time of year, I wouldn't say that it's always going to be a deciding factor - a picture of one chap's mangled bike yesterday showed clearly that he had lights on.

YorkshireMike's picture

posted by YorkshireMike [77 posts]
13th November 2013 - 17:08

14 Likes

This just dreadful, and heart breaking that this news is coming on a daily basis right now.

When riding a bike on the roads of this country you have to assume that ALL motorists are out to murder you, if you look at every other vehicle in that light your one step to being safer on the roads.

Housecathst's picture

posted by Housecathst [86 posts]
13th November 2013 - 17:40

13 Likes

Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

"Hey..... Let's be visible out there."

Neil753's picture

posted by Neil753 [451 posts]
13th November 2013 - 17:54

30 Likes

You'd think 4 people tragically being killed in a week would spark some sort of crisis talks at local or even national government level. 4 people dead, it's just terrible and happens so often that I feat it's almost startting to be treated by the powers that be as "normal". Is there any other example of so many people dying in similar circumstances (not just this past week) and practically nothing being done about it ?

If the biggest 10 businesses in London told the government to fix it or they'd leave the city, it'd be sorted within months.

People being killed simply travelling to work just doesn't seem to be a problem for some, it's just unbelieveable

Scott Spark 910 - Boardman Team Carbon - Planet X XLS

posted by colinth [188 posts]
13th November 2013 - 18:21

32 Likes

brackley88 wrote:
Terrible news.

Interesting to consider why so many in the last week, some thoughts:

1) a sudden surge in cycling - doubt it
2) a sudden surge in large vehicles - doubt it
3) a change in road rules - not that I know
4) a change in cycling behaviour - unlikely
5) a change in visibility - aha....I wonder. Things have just got darker and wetter, both of which can reduce visibility. I would think that low down lights are harder to see for a large vehicle driver than a head in daylight which will be perhaps 2 feet higher up....purely conjecture, but worth considering.

What does this tell me:

1) Make sure all our lights are working
2) Wear hi-viz and reflective clothing
3) ...and most importantly, be even more careful and warry of big vehicles in the dark

What do others think?

I don't really agree about the visibility. This crash in this case was around 9:00am which would mean daylight visibility. It could be that low sunshine blinded the cyclist or driver.

The shocking incident in Croydon was mid-day, so there would be no question of visibility.

And the architect got hit in the evening - which means that this would fit your causality, but it is hardly shows any trend for the time of die.

Statistics can sort of lie with these sorts of things. Just because they happen close together does not mean the streets of London are any more dangerous, it is rather the case that this unfortunate incidents happen so close together.

Perhaps the only link is that these people seem to have used cycling to commute. I wonder if they used their bike for more diverse purposes they may have put themselves out of harms way (i.e. made themselves more experienced).

In my experience riding in London is all about knowing what is going on around you and making sure you don't put yourself in a silly position. In all of these cases it should be noted that the drivers are not reported to have been driving noticeably recklessly. There is some evidence that the cyclists were, perhaps, not in the best positions.

Better infrastructure will help, but we need to get people educated asap as unless someone here has a spare billion sitting in their pants to change London's roads.

posted by Colin Peyresourde [1186 posts]
13th November 2013 - 18:23

17 Likes

Neil753 wrote:
Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

I think it could be highly prejudicial to report that the driver of a lorry crashed into a cyclist when the actual circumstances are unknown. For that reason, the only description that I object to, of the ones you cited, is the "crashing into" one. That definitely seems to suggest that the cyclist is more to blame.

I think it is wise and fair for a news organisation to impartially report the facts, as known at the time. Accounts from shocked eyewitnesses can be notoriously misleading.

Unless we are prepared to demolish London and start again, it is never going to be Amsterdam or Copenhagen. After 20+ years, I have just about given up on cycling as a means of transportation in London. Leisure only from now on.

Never in a hurry on a bicycle.

posted by GoingRoundInCycles [134 posts]
13th November 2013 - 18:38

14 Likes

GoingRoundInCycles wrote:
Neil753 wrote:
Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

I think it could be highly prejudicial to report that the driver of a lorry crashed into a cyclist when the actual circumstances are unknown. For that reason, the only description that I object to, of the ones you cited, is the "crashing into" one. That definitely seems to suggest that the cyclist is more to blame.

I think it is wise and fair for a news organisation to impartially report the facts, as known at the time. Accounts from shocked eyewitnesses can be notoriously misleading.

Unless we are prepared to demolish London and start again, it is never going to be Amsterdam or Copenhagen. After 20+ years, I have just about given up on cycling as a means of transportation in London. Leisure only from now on.

I agree with you. Reporting a vehicle crashing or coliding with a cyclist would be equally as wrong, and certainly not what I'm suggesting.

What I'm pointing out is the consistent bias in the BBC's reporting (check their archive if you don't believe me). It's virtually impossible to find any instance of a vehicle colliding with, or crashing into, a cyclist, unless they're reporting on a case that has been through court. It's all the intitial reports that I'm talking about, ie the one's where the facts are not yet known.

"Hey..... Let's be visible out there."

Neil753's picture

posted by Neil753 [451 posts]
13th November 2013 - 19:46

24 Likes

brackley88 wrote:
Terrible news.

Interesting to consider why so many in the last week, some thoughts:

1) a sudden surge in cycling - doubt it
2) a sudden surge in large vehicles - doubt it
3) a change in road rules - not that I know
4) a change in cycling behaviour - unlikely
5) a change in visibility - aha....I wonder. Things have just got darker and wetter, both of which can reduce visibility. I would think that low down lights are harder to see for a large vehicle driver than a head in daylight which will be perhaps 2 feet higher up....purely conjecture, but worth considering.

What does this tell me:

1) Make sure all our lights are working
2) Wear hi-viz and reflective clothing
3) ...and most importantly, be even more careful and warry of big vehicles in the dark

What do others think?

You've hit three good nails on the head. I don't want to bang on about hi-viz cos I've got three broken spokes to sort out at the moment, but what you're saying is good advice for everyone at this time of year.

"Hey..... Let's be visible out there."

Neil753's picture

posted by Neil753 [451 posts]
13th November 2013 - 20:09

11 Likes

Neil753 wrote:
Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

I pointed out something very similar somewhere else the onus is alway son the cyclist who just happened to ride under the wheels of a lorry.

I don't know if it comes from them trying to be 'unbiased' in their reporting or whether they are bound by law to write what the Police reported at the scene?

William Black's picture

posted by William Black [196 posts]
13th November 2013 - 20:29

12 Likes

I don't ride in London, I don't know the circumstances behind these incidents.

Even in my relatively quiet town, I never ever use the little bit of painted road if it takes me to the left of a large vehicle.

Why encourage people to ride into the most dangerous place?

posted by IanW1968 [205 posts]
13th November 2013 - 21:45

31 Likes

I would suggest all that cycle on Bow roundabout RIDE IN MIDDLE OF THE ROAD make your space slow the other vehicles up. You have the right to ride safely, you have aright to LIVE.

We're all entitled to a reasonable opinion!

posted by Guyz2010 [290 posts]
13th November 2013 - 21:47

17 Likes

Neil753 wrote:
I agree with you. Reporting a vehicle crashing or coliding with a cyclist would be equally as wrong, and certainly not what I'm suggesting.

What I'm pointing out is the consistent bias in the BBC's reporting (check their archive if you don't believe me). It's virtually impossible to find any instance of a vehicle colliding with, or crashing into, a cyclist, unless they're reporting on a case that has been through court. It's all the intitial reports that I'm talking about, ie the one's where the facts are not yet known.

I don't have a problem with the word collision. It takes two to collide and the correct usage shouldn't imply fault on either side. "Crash into" is definitely loaded and suggests the blame lies with the crasher and should be avoided at all costs until the facts have been established.

Maybe the headline is usually reported as "Cyclist seriously injured in collision with tipper truck..." because the injured cyclist is the most important information and should come first?

The other way round doesn't really work for me.

PS. I really appreciate your contributions to this forum, Neil. You talk a lot of sense and I very much admire your ability to remain calm even when provoked by some of the less even-tempered members who post here. Cheers.

Never in a hurry on a bicycle.

posted by GoingRoundInCycles [134 posts]
13th November 2013 - 21:48

20 Likes

The 'collision with' thing is just BBC hyper-neutral house style. They do the same thing with collisions between motor vehicles. It sounds off to us because as cyclists we know that's not how it happens.

I'm willing to bet drivers think the BBC is biased against them too, in the same way that both sides of politics do.

I just got back from Bow. I can't imagine for a moment what TfL were thinking encouraging cyclists to go anywhere that roundabout.

John Stevenson's picture

posted by John Stevenson [1196 posts]
13th November 2013 - 21:50

18 Likes

Neil753 wrote:

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Agreed.

The Beeb constantly gives the impression that the cyclist was the active participant and the HGV was the passive.

That isn't impartial reporting.

Username's picture

posted by Username [76 posts]
13th November 2013 - 22:00

24 Likes

Wesselwookie wrote:
I used to use the flyover when coming in London but since Boris's "improvements" cyclists are forced down to the roundabout.
I personally am not convinced that Boris really gives a shit about cycle safety just his next election.

I too ride it everyday - have done so for the last 16 years. Despite the "improvements", I still ride the flyover every morning. It's more annoying with the segregated cycle lane, but if you move out of the blue cycle lane at Sugar House Lane as you move westbound on the A11, you can cross over pretty safely to get up onto the flyover.

Over and over you hear of cyclists preferring the flyover to the roundabout - and there is in fact a spare unused lane on the westbound side (covered in chevrons). I wonder if anyone has heard of a scheme to make a safe route over the flyover.

At its most interventionist, to keep cyclists off the existing bridge structure completely, it could be a much simpler version of the recently unveiled Dutch "floating roundabout", but at its simplest, some sensible lane painting and staggered signalling to get cyclists safely over the flyover might be smart.

There is nowhere to go northbound or southbound from the roundabout as a cyclist, the A12 is basically a motorway at that point. So the eastbound and westbound movements are the only ones that really matter, and the flyover handles them.

At one point, the High Street 2012 project, that was supposed to redo the entire 6km of road from Aldgate to the Olympic site, was supposed to have something like this in it I thought. In the end, when the Olympics organisers decided to run the marathon elsewhere through London for the Olympics because Whitechapel and Mile End are too ugly for TV, the project was scratched, and only a few shop facades in Stepney Green were redone and the rest of the money went god knows where.

What are some others' thoughts about the flyover?

posted by Mikeduff [24 posts]
13th November 2013 - 22:13

16 Likes

Taking the flyover means moving from the inside to middle lane and many cyclists would be nervous about that unless very confident and experienced. I'm surprised there is no cycling box prior to the lights on the westbound side. The problem I see is many large vehicles going straight onto the A12 Southbound from the L/H wesbound lane and not seeing cyclists going straight on. Cyclists ideally need a head start here.

Shamblesuk's picture

posted by Shamblesuk [106 posts]
13th November 2013 - 22:30

25 Likes

Ironically the new kerb separating cyclists from traffic on the approach to the flyover Westbound makes it much harder to merge. I am not a slow cyclist (very proud of my Eastbound KOM), but I don't like that manoeuvre much.

I'll cycle with my family on the new East (Stratford side of the roundabout) bit of CS2, but no way on the roundabout or the Bow — Mile End section. As for Whitechapel/Aldgate… emphatically no. It is not as if there isn't enough space to do it properly, there just isn't the political will. Boris Johnson wouldn't commute like that, and he would surely not let his family either.

posted by aglet [2 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:06

19 Likes

William Black wrote:
Neil753 wrote:
Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

I pointed out something very similar somewhere else the onus is alway son the cyclist who just happened to ride under the wheels of a lorry.

I don't know if it comes from them trying to be 'unbiased' in their reporting or whether they are bound by law to write what the Police reported at the scene?

It's a legal thing. If charges are about to be or have been laid then biased reporting could prejudice a subsequent trial. That's why the format is to say "x was in collision with" rather than "y hit x". If it has been widely reported that y hit x then y could, quite reasonably, claim that a fair trial would be impossible because of the biased reporting. No newspaper or media outlet would traditionally have wanted to be sued for contempt. Frustrating for a cyclist, I know, but that's why it's couched in such a way.

posted by Meaulnes [45 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:07

24 Likes

John Stevenson wrote:
The 'collision with' thing is just BBC hyper-neutral house style. They do the same thing with collisions between motor vehicles. It sounds off to us because as cyclists we know that's not how it happens.

I'm willing to bet drivers think the BBC is biased against them too, in the same way that both sides of politics do.

I just got back from Bow. I can't imagine for a moment what TfL were thinking encouraging cyclists to go anywhere that roundabout.

I've been digging around on the BBC archive a little more, and discovered something else.

When it's a cyclist and an HGV, or a cyclist and a car, the BBC report the cyclist as doing the coliding, but when it's an accident is between a car and an HGV, it seems to always be the HGV that's doing the colliding.

And when it's an accident between a cyclist and a pedestrian, then they seem to get really excited, using phrases like, "slammed into and killed". I'm actually a bit shocked at the last one I spotted. It's the sort of thing I'd expect from the Daily Mail.

In other words, maybe the "house style" is to favour car drivers in initial reports of accidents.

"Hey..... Let's be visible out there."

Neil753's picture

posted by Neil753 [451 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:09

25 Likes

This is an appalling incident. My sympathies are with the victim's family. And I expect this has brought things back for the previous victims at the roundabout.

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2289 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:15

21 Likes

Meaulnes wrote:
It's a legal thing. If charges are about to be or have been laid then biased reporting could prejudice a subsequent trial. That's why the format is to say "x was in collision with" rather than "y hit x". If it has been widely reported that y hit x then y could, quite reasonably, claim that a fair trial would be impossible because of the biased reporting. No newspaper or media outlet would traditionally have wanted to be sued for contempt. Frustrating for a cyclist, I know, but that's why it's couched in such a way.

Exactly but when its written "cyclist collided with a lorry" that intimates a degree of fault, if the BBC (insert any news channel here) wrote "cyclist was involved in a road traffic accident with a lorry" that might balance the issue, I just wonder who is supplying the information. The trouble is there doesn't seem to be a huge amount of consistency across the board.

The trouble to me is that instead of seeing the tragedy of some bloke dying his daughters not having a dad a mum losing a son, a brother losing his best friend it's brought down to a cyclist VS a vehicle. A cyclist is not a "vehicle" it is not "involved in a collision" it's a human being being hit by over one of metal... I still can't understand that when some people get behind a wheel they seem to see a person on bicycle as just another car rather than some very very real flesh and bones which break very easily.

Some roadie rider once wore a skin suit which was just flesh and bones...i'd love to track that kit down and ride it I wonder if it would make the general public think about the damage a car would do to a person.

William Black's picture

posted by William Black [196 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:24

16 Likes

William Black wrote:

Some roadie rider once wore a skin suit which was just flesh and bones...i'd love to track that kit down and ride it I wonder if it would make the general public think about the damage a car would do to a person.

It was Mario Cipollini, as shown here: http://autobus.cyclingnews.com/photos/2001/may01/giro1/AFPcipo_muscle_su...

It could work. Research from the university of bath a few years ago showed dressing as a woman, and wearing a wig of long female hair and no helmet made drivers give the rider a wider berth too... I'll leave that to you though. Sadly that didn't work for the victims in London recently.

posted by Mikeduff [24 posts]
13th November 2013 - 23:50

11 Likes

Another death.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-24936942

"following a collision with a double decker bus"

Words fail me.

posted by VeloPeo [221 posts]
14th November 2013 - 7:03

16 Likes

They don't fail me; CS2 is fundamentally broken West from Bow. Some of the huge expanse of road and pavement should be dedicated to cycling, before more people die. When Boris said he was going to “go Dutch”, that is what I thought he meant — now
I expect him to finally follow through and implement it.

posted by aglet [2 posts]
14th November 2013 - 7:27

9 Likes

'Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?'

They do seem keen to do this. Because it is factually correct. Do you want some Daily Mail-type headline about killer drivers?

posted by andyp [1018 posts]
14th November 2013 - 8:34

16 Likes

Neil753 wrote:
What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.


It's just you. They're talking from the point of view of the cyclist because that's what the article is about. A crash or collision has taken place and the cyclist has died, therefore "a cyclist has died after a collision/crash with a lorry" is correct. If the lorry driver had been injured and the article was about him, it would be "a lorry driver has died after being in a collision with a cyclist", it's got absolutely nothing to do with blame and the BBC would be wrong to even speculate on blame.

posted by AyBee [85 posts]
14th November 2013 - 9:46

11 Likes

Agree with your comments that stats can lie and this may be a coincidence; a tragic coincidence. Also agree it's a lot about riding in the 'right way' to stay safe. Good points re: these specific accidents and their time of day. That said, I would be really interested to see research that made a full open minded analysis of accidents:

- time
- weather and light conditions
- vehicles involved
- type of cyclist
- position of cyclist in road/ road situation etc

..etc...

Would be very interesting to understand the pattern to inform further changes in infrastructure, vehicle rules and training, cyclist training.

...my only other 'what has changed point' is:

1) Low bright light. I have become very aware the last few weeks how having a bright low sun right behind me makes me more vulnerable. It's part oft he visibility point and another thing to be aware of when cycling defensively.

Nonetheless, all your points on infrastructure are well made. But whatever changes are made people are still going to be hurt, and we should continue to analyse the causes and consider what other interventions can help keep us all safe.

Safe riding everyone!

posted by brackley88 [78 posts]
14th November 2013 - 11:26

12 Likes

A large gathering of London cyclists at a vigil at Bow Roundabout last night:

"1000 people on bikes protesting peacefully at Bow tonight. Boris, are you listening? pic.twitter.com/G6SDwY03Rw"

From https://twitter.com/london_cycling

Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [2036 posts]
14th November 2013 - 11:52

7 Likes

Yes, we should definitely keep an open mind on the causes. I imagine a report into the causes and of the death with be written up in a coroners report, and only then can we truly reflect on the reasons.

Someone above was lamenting about the 'lack' of a response on these deaths. The fact is nothing meaningful can be done until a considered report on them has been done. You only end up making rash decisions about perceived causes…..which does no one any good.

The latest death (today) was the result of an accident at 23:30, again, no particular correlation with the time of day and none with the place it happened.

If I were to pre-empt anything, it would be that we need to improve cycle safety on the streets of London by educating riders. Though the problem is that many will not do so because they don't feel the need to, and I can understand that. Since passing my cycling proficiency aged 9 I haven't done any road safety education in a formal sense.

posted by Colin Peyresourde [1186 posts]
14th November 2013 - 11:57

12 Likes

Meaulnes wrote:
William Black wrote:
Neil753 wrote:
Actually, the BBC didn't report that, "a female cyclist in her mid-20s has died after being hit by a lorry at London's Bow roundabout this morning". What this BBC article actually said was that, "a cyclist has been killed in a crash with a lorry".

Is it just me, or do other cyclists feel that the BBC seems keen to report cylists as being in a crash with, crashing into, in collision with, or colliding with, a vehicle?

In the very same piece, the BBC reports other recent incidents, thus:

"a male cyclist suffered life threatening injuries after in a crash with a lorry"

"a cyclist in his 40s died after a crash with a bus"

"a cyclist died after a collision with a tipper lorry"

Do you sense a pattern here? You've only got to search the BBC archives and this becomes even more noticeable. Even cyclists who are hit from behind, or even stationary, are described as colliding with, or in collision with, the vehicle.

Sure, once the driver goes to court, the vehicle is described as hitting the cyclist but, in the initial reports before the true facts are known, the BBC do seem to have a propensity to report that it is the cyclist who is doing the colliding.

I pointed out something very similar somewhere else the onus is alway son the cyclist who just happened to ride under the wheels of a lorry.

I don't know if it comes from them trying to be 'unbiased' in their reporting or whether they are bound by law to write what the Police reported at the scene?

It's a legal thing. If charges are about to be or have been laid then biased reporting could prejudice a subsequent trial. That's why the format is to say "x was in collision with" rather than "y hit x". If it has been widely reported that y hit x then y could, quite reasonably, claim that a fair trial would be impossible because of the biased reporting. No newspaper or media outlet would traditionally have wanted to be sued for contempt. Frustrating for a cyclist, I know, but that's why it's couched in such a way.

if a cyclist crashed into a lorry they wouldnt be dead, they would simply bump it (maybe quite hard!) and fall on the floor, getting grazed knees/elbows/hands and maybe a bump on the head!

lorry/motor vehicle crashing into cyclist - thats completely different. thats when the cyclist goes under the wheels and ends up dead

Feel the fear and do it anyway

hood's picture

posted by hood [117 posts]
15th November 2013 - 15:33

6 Likes