Survey says unsafe roads deter cyclists

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SAFETY concerns are keeping would-be cyclists off the roads, according to a survey.

Two in three commuters believe most roads are unfit for cycling but many would cycle if roads were safer.

Now, road safety charity Brake is calling for widespread 20 mph limits and more segregated cycle paths on commmuter routes.

Local authorities, including Calderdale, have started to implement 20 mph zones and the Government is encouraging cycling to improve health and reduce pollution.

Brake deputy chief executive Julie Townsend said: “Widespread 20mph limits and cycle paths where people live and work would encourage more people to cycle, without their lives being threatened by fast traffic.

“It would also, crucially, help prevent those already cycling from falling victim to devastating crashes.

“This survey shows the huge amount of public support for safe cycling.

“We’re calling on the authorities to act upon this to enable people to take to their bikes without fear.”

Cyclists’ Touring Club Calderdale representative John Whiteley said 20 mph limits were welcomed but were introduced in congested areas from a general road safety aspect rather than for cyclists.

“Unfortunately, some motorists make life dangerous for cyclists, pedestrians and other motorists. Cyclists should be considered in every road scheme that is proposed but are not and there is no legislation requiring they are,” he said.

“We have some excellent officers in Calderdale highways who are very positive towards cyclists but top-level policy doesn’t seem to include us.

“What Calderdale is doing and needs applauding is the development of off-road routes and greenways.”

The survey was conducted for Brake and solicitors Bolt Burdon Kemp.