Ban lorries in peak hour traffic, says Boardman

Olympic legend calls on London mayor to take tough decisions to tackle lorry danger

Boris Johnson promised Chris Boardman he wouls investigate whether London could follow Paris and ban HGVs in peak traffic

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Chris Boardman has written to London Mayor Boris Johnson urging him to ban lorries at peak time in the capital, to reduce the number of cyclist deaths.

According to the Olympic champion turned British Cycling policy advisor, nine of the 14 cyclist’s deaths in London this year have involved a heavy goods vehicle.

In the open letter, published this morning, Boardman said: “When I rode alongside you to help you launch your vision for cycling in March this year, you made a verbal promise to look at the successful experiences of Paris and many other cities in restricting the movements of heavy vehicles during peak hours.

“British Cycling is disappointed that, eight months later, nothing has been announced on progressing this. Now is the time to make the tough and critical decisions necessary to achieve your vision – without that, more live will be put at risk.”

Boardman’s letter is the latest intervention urging both local and national governments to act fast and decisively on lorry danger. Last week, the CTC’s chief executive Gordon Seabright wrote to Parliamentary under Secretary of State for Transport Robert Goodwill, to hold hauliers to account for cyclist fatalities.

Seabright’s letter said: “We know from the Freight Transport Association’s disparagement of even modest efforts on behalf of cycle safety by your Department that hauliers refuse to take this issue seriously.  Until they do, CTC urges you to call in the leaders of the haulage industry so they can be held to account by yourself and representatives of pedestrians and cyclists whenever a vulnerable road user is killed by a lorry.”

In September, Johnson announced a five point plan to tackle lorry danger in London, including punitive fines for unsafe lorries entering central London, a taskforce to take action against dangerous drivers and more driver training.

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In October, a Transport for London document ‘Delivering a Road Freight Legacy’, said it would start trialling out-of-hours freight delivery schemes around the city. Trials are expected to  start in early 2014.