Last Friday, 29 October, LCC handed in our Dangerous Junctions petition to Assembly Member Caroline Pigeon MBE at the junction where Dr Marta Krawiec tragically lost her life after being hit by a large turning lorry in August. This was the 5th cyclist death at the Holborn gyratory in 8 years.
Over 7,500 Londoners signed the petition, calling on the Mayor of London to take rapid action to tackle London’s most dangerous junctions in order to prevent further casualties. Caroline will present our petition to the Mayor at the London Assembly’s Plenary on 11 November and continue to press the Mayor on action on junctions, while LCC will continue pushing for changes not only at the Holborn gyratory, but also the most dangerous junctions across London.
Your support at our protest in September and the petition has already led to rapid action, with trial changes to the junction of Theobalds Road and Southampton Row where Dr Krawiec died. This shows that it is possible to make safety improvements at junctions without months or even years of delay and deliberation – it’s possible for London’s councils and TfL to move much faster. But much more needs to be done. Despite these improvements this junction, and many others, still remains dangerous.
Since Dr Krawiec’s death, there has been at least one further cycling fatality in London at a dangerous junction in Harrow. And last night another cyclist was hit, by a bus, near King’s Cross Station. We are still awaiting full details, but this is an area with many dangerous junctions where there have been deaths and serious injuries to people walking and cycling.
We cannot let needless loss of life continue. Critical safety issues for people walking and cycling must be removed at junctions to deliver a “Vision Zero” London free from fatal road collisions.
Every serious collision is needless and preventable – these are not ‘accidents’, but collisions as a combined result of lack of enforcement and roads justice, poor road design, poor vehicle design and road user behaviour. It is, as many European cities are now demonstrating, possible to design out such issues progressively, over time. And what is needed for that to happen is also clear – political will to make changes, funding to enable such changes and priority put to saving lives, not a minute on motor vehicles’ journeys. If the Mayor of London is serious about his “Vision Zero” pledge, and London’s councils want to enable it, that’s what needs to happen.
That’s why we are calling on the Mayor and councils to rapidly rollout safety improvements at every London junction where those walking and cycling lose their lives, with the most dangerous prioritised first. What TfL and DfT call “critical issues” at junctions must be addressed to ensure that every arm of each junction is safe to cycle or walk through. That way these junctions will help realise the Mayor’s “Vision Zero” plan for no fatal road collisions or serious injuries in London by 2041, rather than trash it.
Following the hand-in of the petition to the Mayor, Sadiq Khan by Caroline Pidgeon MBE, LCC will continue to push for a massive shift in priorities and for bolder, faster action at our most dangerous junctions. We are working on several strands of this vital campaigning work – sign up to our newsletter below to learn more as and when we can reveal our next steps.
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