The Construction Industry Cycling Commission (CICC) has published a 10-point manifesto calling for cycle safety to form part of the accreditation process for the Considerate Constructors Scheme. The move comes after research it commissioned found that construction HGVs are involved in more than half of all fatal cycling accidents in London.
The Considerate Constructors Scheme is a non-profit-making, independent organisation founded to help the construction industry improve its image. Construction firms voluntarily register with the scheme and agree to abide by its Code of Considerate Practice. Construction News reports that a group of leading contractors and architects has now called for cycle safety to form part of the accreditation process.
The CICC is chaired by Mike Hussey, the chief executive of property development and investment firm, Almacantar, who said: “The level of cycling accidents in the UK is simply unacceptable. The CICC’s manifesto for change sets out clear ways we can improve cycle safety. As an industry, we have an obligation to improve the dangerous conditions cyclists face, so I urge our peers to join us and commit to our recommendations.”
CICC’s research found that 57 per cent of crashes resulting in the death of a cyclist in London between 2007 and 2014 involved HGVs – despite their only comprising 3.5 per cent of traffic. It also found that 76 per cent of collisions took place at junctions, while nearly two-thirds of fatalities at traffic lights involved large vehicles turning left or moving off.
In September, the safer lorry scheme came into effect, demanding that all HGVs operating in London be fitted with certain safety equipment. There have since been calls for the scheme to be applied nationwide.
Ruth Cadbury, Labour MP for Brentford and Isleworth and chair of the all-party cycling group, said of the CICC’s call: “There is a disproportionate number of cyclists being killed by construction vehicles and we welcome this initiative to make all those involved in the building industry more aware of the dangers created by HGVs and of their responsibilities in reducing casualties.”
The full 10-point manifesto is as follows:
- For all property developers and contractors to recognise that health and safety on the road is as important as it is on site.
- For cycle safety to be recognised as part of the Considerate Constructors’ accreditation, ensuring that all lorries used on sites have the requisite safety features and that drivers are properly trained.
- For the industry – large and small organisations – to adopt the CLOCS standard as a default requirement on all construction schemes in London and other major cities, and wherever significant interaction between HGVs and cyclists can be expected.
- For investment in safer vehicles to be made ahead of regulation, such as direct vision cabs, skirts, and specific safety standards and equipment.
- For the construction industry to fast-track discussion and action around changes to vehicle safety, which might include the retrofitting of older vehicles and retiming of journeys to avoid morning peak hours.
- For design professionals to be better trained in the design and planning of safer environments for vulnerable road users.
- For property developers to use hoarding and wraps of new developments to deploy helpful safety advice for cyclists and drivers.
- For the construction industry to support training for all road users.
- For the construction industry to support the campaign for greater separation between cyclists and HGVs in time and/or space at junctions and on links, and helping to disseminate information on primary routes used by HGV.
- For the construction industry to support more detailed research to understand the circumstances surrounding lorry/cyclist collisions to identify the root cause of injuries, fatalities and near misses.