Alex Bowden August 25 2018
A cyclist who had her left leg amputated after a collision with a cement mixer has called for restrictions on HGVs using congested urban roads. Sarah Doone was dragged under the vehicle at Old Street roundabout last month and only just escaped being crushed by the rear wheels.
“I’ve got a big, bright backpack but [a driver] can’t have eyes everywhere if your truck is too big,” she told the Sunday Times (link is external). “These trucks are enormous.”
She added: “[I remember] screaming as loudly as I possibly could — ah, ah, ah — just so people would hear me before I went under the next set [of wheels]. I knew if I went under the next set, then my head would probably be under.”
Work to improve the Old Street roundabout for cyclists was due to begin in 2016, but has been repeatedly pushed back.
The Islington Tribune reports that following the collision involving Doone, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan called an urgent meeting with Transport for London (TfL). The transport authority has now confirmed that preparatory works will start in November and contractors will work six-day weeks with extended hours to complete the work by autumn 2020.
A study for TfL by consulting engineer WSP this week recommended using larger articulated lorries for deliveries to construction sites in the capital.
The Construction Index (link is external) reports that switching to artics to carry bulk construction materials could reduce CO2 emissions by 32 per cent and bring down the number of construction lorries on the roads by up to 37 per cent.
Ian Brooker, director of logistics at WSP, said: “The benefits of using articulated vehicles far outweigh any actual or perceived safety concerns.
“HGVs currently still remain essential for the transportation of materials to and from construction sites, but if we can reduce these numbers by using larger, more appropriate vehicles, we can drive towards a reduction in emissions and improve the safety on our roads.”