The All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group (APPCG) is calling for cyclists who have been involved in a collision or near miss to take part in a public inquiry amid concerns the justice system is failing injured cyclists, and letting drivers off lightly following collisions.
Citing concerns raised by constituents, and news reports, the APPCG says cyclists and their families sometimes struggle to achieve justice, from the incident itself, right through to the courts.
For their inquiry “Cycling and the Justice System” the APPCG wants to hear individual cyclists’ and organisations’ experiences before Monday 16 January, for a report to be published in the Spring.
Ruth Cadbury, Labour MP for Brentford and Isleworth, and co-chair of the APPCG, said: “There’s hardly a week that goes by that I do not read or hear of a case involving a cyclist where justice appears not to have been served; drivers apparently getting off lightly when a cyclist has been killed or seriously injured.
“Our investigation will explore if these are isolated incidents or if there needs to be legislation to tighten up the procedures when cyclist’s collisions and near misses are being investigated.”
In addition to written evidence, the inquiry will feature four oral evidence sessions, on enforcement and investigation of collisions, as well as criminal law and civil justice, and driver awareness relating to collisions and near misses of cyclists. The APPCG will also take evidence from Government departments and ministers.
Among the issues that could be investigated are policing, from prioritising road traffic law enforcement to investigations, the revision of careless and dangerous driving charging standards, the introduction of presumed liability, and a national standard for collision investigation. It will also ask whether the Highway Code needs updating to reflect an increased duty of care on drivers.
The inquiry, which will run until 28 February, is being funded by the Cyclists’ Defence Fund, and legal firms Leigh Day and Slater + Gordon. Results are expected to be published in the Spring, and will inform the APPCG’s work within Westminster to get “more people cycling in the UK, more often.”
Those who would like to submit evidence are asked to email comments or experiences to coffmana [at] parliament.uk, using a maximum of two pages of A4 and no more than five issues for the inquiry to consider. Use ‘APPCG Justice Inquiry’ as the subject of the email. The deadline for submissions is 16 January 2017.