The Telegraph carries an interesting article about a report by TfL into a trial to allow bicycles and motorbikes to operate in several bus lanes which was apparently shelved despite the fact that the scheme was shown to prevent accidents and save lives:
TfL created three trial routes on which "P2Ws" (powered two-wheelers) were allowed to use bus lanes, although one, on the A13, was later discounted because the figures were distorted by major roadworks. Results from the other two, on the A23 in south London and the A41 in north London, show major safety benefits to all "VRUs" (Vulnerable Road Users - ie pedestrians, cyclists and scooter/motorcycle riders). According to the report's executive summary, there was a net reduction in collisions involving P2Ws and pedestrians (46 per cent) or cyclists (44 per cent), plus a 45 per cent reduction in P2W casualties.
With many cities in the UK waiting on the results of this report, the question is raised as to why TfL and the Mayor would deliberately choose not to act on such information.
British Motorcycle Federation spokesman, Jeff Stone, said:
“We’ve been involved with the campaign for wider bus lane access for over twelve years now. These findings match what we know from elsewhere and I find it bizarre that an expensive report set up to establish the facts has confirmed what we have been saying – but has been suppressed because it doesn’t suit. This smacks of political interference from the highest level.”
Is TfL sitting on potentially life-saving information because, as Simon Carr of the Independent states, "this will offend the cycling lobby so it's sent back for revision"? If this is the case, it is a disgrace.
The paramount duties of TfL and the Mayor in this regard are to keep London moving and to protect the people who travel within the areas covered by them. If TfL and the Mayor are sitting on this report as not to offend one lobby, then they are derelict in their duties and deserve to be held to account.