Essex Police "determined" to improve safety for cyclists

Braintree and Witham Times: Essex Police "determined" to improve safety for cyclists Essex Police "determined" to improve safety for cyclists

Dozens of cyclists have been stopped and given road safety advice as part of a new operation by Essex Police.

Officers will be patrolling busy cycle routes in four areas of the county where an increasing number of riders are being involved in serious road crashes.

With more people taking up cycling to get to work, to keep fit or for pleasure and with growing interest in the Tour de France cycle race stage passing through the county in July, police are determined to improve safety and reduce casualties.

January, February and March are the months when road collisions involving cyclists increase, mainly during dark evenings when people cycle home from school, college or work.

In the corresponding period in 2013 there was a 50 per cent increase in recorded casualties in the Basildon dalone. Other districts such as Chelmsford and Colchester have also seen an increase, but to a lesser extent.

Operation Bluenose aims to find riders at risk and urge them to use more safety equipment such as lights, helmets and high visibility clothing. Officers are also using social media to ask cyclists to identify which areas and cycle routes should be investigated.

Members of the Essex Police Casualty Reduction Section have already stopped more than 120 cyclists in Basildon, mainly around the industrial areas of Cranes Farm Road and Burnt Mills.

Sgt Graham Freeman, who is running the operation, said: "The vast majority of people we stopped were very receptive and those who were fully complying with the law were most impressed that Essex Police was tackling the problem.

"The majority of those who had no lights or reflective clothing assured us that they would have some as quickly as possible. Only one or two people had to be reminded that there would be a £50 fine if they failed to comply and were stopped and warned for a second time.

"About 50 per cent had no lights and were given verbal warnings. About 50 per cent had no reflective clothing and 75 per cent had no cycle helmet.

"The approach was initially to stop and educate cyclists including those riding without lights, on footpaths, in pedestrian-only areas or riding the wrong way down one-way streets. We will also be handing out the 'Let’s Look Out For Each Other' literature when talking with people.

"We will also be showing riders a map which outlines where the cycle road collision have happened in their areas. Our stop checks will be at some of these collision sites so showing a map will have much more of an impact than just giving words of advice.”

"Obviously if further action is deemed necessary to drive home the need for improved safety, we will issue fixed penalty tickets.”

Officers will be carrying out similar stop checks on cyclists in Harlow, Chelmsford and Colchester until the end of March.
 

Comments (11)

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10:30am Thu 23 Jan 14

keith_l says...

The majority of cyclists killed and seriously injured receive crushing and bodily imapct injuries - head injuries are a very small minority.

Why is there so much emphasis on cycle helmets, which only have a very minor shock absorbing capability anyway?
The majority of cyclists killed and seriously injured receive crushing and bodily imapct injuries - head injuries are a very small minority. Why is there so much emphasis on cycle helmets, which only have a very minor shock absorbing capability anyway? keith_l
  • Score: 2

10:55am Thu 23 Jan 14

Jack222 says...

Helmets are actually very important part of cycle safety...

But seriously far too many cyclists are a menace on the country roads - we need dedicated cycle paths. to get them off the raods
Helmets are actually very important part of cycle safety... But seriously far too many cyclists are a menace on the country roads - we need dedicated cycle paths. to get them off the raods Jack222
  • Score: -1

12:11pm Thu 23 Jan 14

Bhudeeka says...

all cyclists should be made to have lessons and learn road safety just like drivers they should also be made to pay for using the roads and also keep them off our pavements they arej ust a total nuisance and danger to motorists and pedestrians
all cyclists should be made to have lessons and learn road safety just like drivers they should also be made to pay for using the roads and also keep them off our pavements they arej ust a total nuisance and danger to motorists and pedestrians Bhudeeka
  • Score: -6

12:24pm Thu 23 Jan 14

SJ Chelmsford says...

There are currently at least 2 motorcyclists using cycle paths to cut through the Chancellor Park estate into the Springfield Business Park which is supposed to be no vehicle access from the estate. It would be good if the police could do something about this.
There are currently at least 2 motorcyclists using cycle paths to cut through the Chancellor Park estate into the Springfield Business Park which is supposed to be no vehicle access from the estate. It would be good if the police could do something about this. SJ Chelmsford
  • Score: 5

1:19pm Thu 23 Jan 14

Don Barnard says...

I am concerned that the new law on drug driving and the introduction of roadside drug tests more drivers will be getting on their bike to avoid losing their license - which begs the question should we drug test cyclists!
I am concerned that the new law on drug driving and the introduction of roadside drug tests more drivers will be getting on their bike to avoid losing their license - which begs the question should we drug test cyclists! Don Barnard
  • Score: 6

1:29pm Thu 23 Jan 14

keith_l says...

Safe cycling needs to be taught.

For starters:

Bring back Cycling Profficiency.

Teach teenagers and young adults that it is not acceptable to cycle on the pavement.

Enforce the law regarding pavents, lights, etc.
Safe cycling needs to be taught. For starters: Bring back Cycling Profficiency. Teach teenagers and young adults that it is not acceptable to cycle on the pavement. Enforce the law regarding pavents, lights, etc. keith_l
  • Score: 9

1:37pm Thu 23 Jan 14

anoneemouse says...

Most people cycling too and from work do pay for the upkeep of the roads they cycle one. The tax you pay on your motor vehicle is not 'Road Tax', it's general taxation.
I cycle too and from work every day and pay V.E.D on my car and Council Tax (some of which does pay for the upkeep of the roads I cycle on).
However (this has been debated over and over again), there should be more of a push to educate all road users to respect each other. If they are allowed on the road then they should drive respectfully and considerately to other road users, whether they are cyclists, horse riders or any other vehicle. The whole 'them vs motor vehicles' thing has to stop.
Most people cycling too and from work do pay for the upkeep of the roads they cycle one. The tax you pay on your motor vehicle is not 'Road Tax', it's general taxation. I cycle too and from work every day and pay V.E.D on my car and Council Tax (some of which does pay for the upkeep of the roads I cycle on). However (this has been debated over and over again), there should be more of a push to educate all road users to respect each other. If they are allowed on the road then they should drive respectfully and considerately to other road users, whether they are cyclists, horse riders or any other vehicle. The whole 'them vs motor vehicles' thing has to stop. anoneemouse
  • Score: 5

3:32pm Thu 23 Jan 14

keith_l says...

anoneemouse wrote:
Most people cycling too and from work do pay for the upkeep of the roads they cycle one. The tax you pay on your motor vehicle is not 'Road Tax', it's general taxation.
I cycle too and from work every day and pay V.E.D on my car and Council Tax (some of which does pay for the upkeep of the roads I cycle on).
However (this has been debated over and over again), there should be more of a push to educate all road users to respect each other. If they are allowed on the road then they should drive respectfully and considerately to other road users, whether they are cyclists, horse riders or any other vehicle. The whole 'them vs motor vehicles' thing has to stop.
I agree - I cycle either end of a train journey to Liverpool Street in order to get to work. My household (3 adults) has 2 cars and a van, so we do pay our fair share or more of VED and also income tax and council tax.
[quote][p][bold]anoneemouse[/bold] wrote: Most people cycling too and from work do pay for the upkeep of the roads they cycle one. The tax you pay on your motor vehicle is not 'Road Tax', it's general taxation. I cycle too and from work every day and pay V.E.D on my car and Council Tax (some of which does pay for the upkeep of the roads I cycle on). However (this has been debated over and over again), there should be more of a push to educate all road users to respect each other. If they are allowed on the road then they should drive respectfully and considerately to other road users, whether they are cyclists, horse riders or any other vehicle. The whole 'them vs motor vehicles' thing has to stop.[/p][/quote]I agree - I cycle either end of a train journey to Liverpool Street in order to get to work. My household (3 adults) has 2 cars and a van, so we do pay our fair share or more of VED and also income tax and council tax. keith_l
  • Score: 4

8:51pm Thu 23 Jan 14

OMPITA [Intl] says...

Bhudeeka wrote:
all cyclists should be made to have lessons and learn road safety just like drivers they should also be made to pay for using the roads and also keep them off our pavements they arej ust a total nuisance and danger to motorists and pedestrians
What logical rationale is there behind this suggestion that cyclists should be made to pay for using roads; how could such a scheme ever be out into practice and what benefits would it bring.

Let's hear from Bhudeeka:

Her justification for this radical proposal (something more than just a pathological hatred of cyclists please).

A. How she thinks it could be administered and by whom and at what cost.

B. What it benefits it would achieve.

C..Why it shouldn't also apply to pedestrians as well.

D. If successful will she propose extending it to other categories that she so dislikes such as Gum Chewers, Smokers, Mobile Phone Users, Council House Tenants, Jobless Benefits Claimants and um, er, oh yes I almost forgot - Me! Ha ha

Should make for some interesting reading!.
[quote][p][bold]Bhudeeka[/bold] wrote: all cyclists should be made to have lessons and learn road safety just like drivers they should also be made to pay for using the roads and also keep them off our pavements they arej ust a total nuisance and danger to motorists and pedestrians[/p][/quote]What logical rationale is there behind this suggestion that cyclists should be made to pay for using roads; how could such a scheme ever be out into practice and what benefits would it bring. Let's hear from Bhudeeka: Her justification for this radical proposal (something more than just a pathological hatred of cyclists please). A. How she thinks it could be administered and by whom and at what cost. B. What it benefits it would achieve. C..Why it shouldn't also apply to pedestrians as well. D. If successful will she propose extending it to other categories that she so dislikes such as Gum Chewers, Smokers, Mobile Phone Users, Council House Tenants, Jobless Benefits Claimants and um, er, oh yes I almost forgot - Me! Ha ha Should make for some interesting reading!. OMPITA [Intl]
  • Score: 5

1:00pm Mon 27 Jan 14

The Stinker Returns says...

I have to say that I find most cyclists in London to be arrogant rude individuals who are probably lawyers and bankers and believe they have a right to cycle where they like. Also, bikes on rush hour trains should be banned. Travelling to London this morning I was prevented from making an early exit on arrival at Liverpool Street because a bike was blocking the entire doorway and the owner only bothered to get up and move to the front of the queue in his own time. Nice. Happens regularly on the way home too.
I have to say that I find most cyclists in London to be arrogant rude individuals who are probably lawyers and bankers and believe they have a right to cycle where they like. Also, bikes on rush hour trains should be banned. Travelling to London this morning I was prevented from making an early exit on arrival at Liverpool Street because a bike was blocking the entire doorway and the owner only bothered to get up and move to the front of the queue in his own time. Nice. Happens regularly on the way home too. The Stinker Returns
  • Score: -1

2:06pm Mon 27 Jan 14

keith_l says...

The Stinker Returns wrote:
I have to say that I find most cyclists in London to be arrogant rude individuals who are probably lawyers and bankers and believe they have a right to cycle where they like. Also, bikes on rush hour trains should be banned. Travelling to London this morning I was prevented from making an early exit on arrival at Liverpool Street because a bike was blocking the entire doorway and the owner only bothered to get up and move to the front of the queue in his own time. Nice. Happens regularly on the way home too.
Bikes on rush hour trains ARE banned, except those that can be, and have been, folded. Then they take up no more floor space than a medium sized suitcase. The trouble is, the staff need to enforce the rules - and it is made more complex because the ban only applies between Shenfield and Liverpool Street so the staff don't know if the bike will be taken off before that point.

With regard to cyclists in London, I think it is the minority who fit your criteria. Most do stop for red lights and pedestrian crossings, but the few that don't stand out in your memory and you tar us all with the same brush.

You don't often get cyclists on the pavement in central London - it would be counter productive due to the number of pedestrians. However, in Witham I rarely see other cyclists on the road but plenty on the pavement.



However, didn't you realise that the Highway Code doesn't seem to apply to Boris Bikes?

Finally, as well as pedestrians having to put up with "arrogant rude" cyclists, the cylists have to put up with pedestrians who think it is OK to step into the road without looking.


[quote][p][bold]The Stinker Returns[/bold] wrote: I have to say that I find most cyclists in London to be arrogant rude individuals who are probably lawyers and bankers and believe they have a right to cycle where they like. Also, bikes on rush hour trains should be banned. Travelling to London this morning I was prevented from making an early exit on arrival at Liverpool Street because a bike was blocking the entire doorway and the owner only bothered to get up and move to the front of the queue in his own time. Nice. Happens regularly on the way home too.[/p][/quote]Bikes on rush hour trains ARE banned, except those that can be, and have been, folded. Then they take up no more floor space than a medium sized suitcase. The trouble is, the staff need to enforce the rules - and it is made more complex because the ban only applies between Shenfield and Liverpool Street so the staff don't know if the bike will be taken off before that point. With regard to cyclists in London, I think it is the minority who fit your criteria. Most do stop for red lights and pedestrian crossings, but the few that don't stand out in your memory and you tar us all with the same brush. You don't often get cyclists on the pavement in central London - it would be counter productive due to the number of pedestrians. However, in Witham I rarely see other cyclists on the road but plenty on the pavement. [ ... step onto soapbox ... ] However, didn't you realise that the Highway Code doesn't seem to apply to Boris Bikes? Finally, as well as pedestrians having to put up with "arrogant rude" cyclists, the cylists have to put up with pedestrians who think it is OK to step into the road without looking. [ ... Climbs off soapbox ... ] keith_l
  • Score: 3

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