The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and Dundee)

Mark Beaumont backs new laws to help cyclists

Proposed changes could see motorists forced to pay damages after an accident

- Ben Philip

Round-the-world cyclist Mark Beaumont is leading calls for the Scottish Parliament to change civil law to help protect vulnerable road users.

Beaumont has fronted a video released by the Road Share campaign group. It sets out the case for presumed liability, a system which would assume motorists are liable following a collision with a cyclist or pedestrian unless they can demonstrat­e otherwise.

In the video, Beaumont introduces Frances Darling, who tells how her sister Sally Low was killed while cycling.

He said: “I was very moved to hear Frances explain what had happened to Sally and how our current fault-based system had let her family down.

“Presumed liability would ensure that vulnerable road users are compensate­d quickly and fairly, and the bereaved and those who suffer serious injury are treated with compassion.

“I hope that all MSPs in the new Scottish Parliament take a few minutes to watch this video then take positive steps to bring about this legislativ­e change.”

A petition calling for the change has attracted more than 10,000 signatures.

Brenda Mitchell, founder member of Road Share, said: “Sally did nothing wrong and the driver who hit her was fully insured yet Sally’s family had to resort to litigation to recover muchneeded compensati­on.

“It’s disgracefu­l that the insurer didn’t consider easing the financial burden on Sally’s family. Presumed liability rights a wrong in our current fault-based system and ensures the weak are protected.”

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