Risking lives for the inside track
UNDERTAKING CYCLISTS INVOLVED IN A WORRYING NUMBER OF CRASHES
ALMOST 70 cyclists a year have been involved in crashes while undertaking vehicles in west London since 2010, according to figures from the Department for Transport (DfT).
The statistics, taken from police reports by the DfT, show that there were 417 collisions involving cyclists passing on the inside between 2010 to 2015.
This averages around 69.5 per year in the area, with four of these incidents being fatal – three in Westminster and one in Ealing.
Westminster was the west London borough with the highest number of crashes with 163 during that five year period.
Hotspots include Chiswick High Road and the A308 in Parsons Green and Walham Green.
The DfT figures also show that more than half of recorded cases of cyclist incidents involving undertaking.
Road safety campaign Think! has issued safety advice to help protect cyclists.
A spokesman said: “We want to remind cyclists to ‘hang back’ at junctions to avoid getting caught between a lorry and a left hand turn.
“We have also teamed up with the Freight Transport Association to remind HGV drivers to look out for cyclists.”
Cyclists moving through slowmoving or stationary traffic on the inside or outside is called “filtering” and there is no law or part of the Highway Code which bans the practice.
Rule 160 of the Highway Code says: “[Drivers should] be aware of other road users, especially cycles and motorcycles who may be filtering through the traffic.”
The code shows there is a responsibility of drivers to be aware of their surroundings and that the cyclist is not in the wrong undertaking traffic.
However, passing on the inside is dangerous as other vehicles may not take precautions when pulling away.
Across the country there were 2,823 accidents involving undertaking cyclists between 2010 and 2015, and seventeen of these were fatal.
The table on the right shows by borough the number of recorded cases of cyclists involved in undertaking crashes between 2010 and 2015