20mph limit to be implemented in the City of London

A 20mph limit is to be implemented across all roads in the City of London. The City of London’s full Court of Common Council has voted for an area wide 20mph limit to protect workers and visitors to the square mile. 20mph limits passed the Planning and Transportation Committee and Policy and Resources Committee in June after the City of London commissioned an air quality impact report from Imperial College. This showed no negative effects. Research also found that for the 1.6 mile widest City of London journey limits would only mean a maximum 25 seconds extra journey time. In July the Mayor’s Roads Task Force recommended that the all the central zone i.e. West End, The City and Southbank become 20mph across the whole area. A quarter of London boroughs now either have a total 20mph limits policy or are moving towards a 20mph speed limit, these include Islington, Camden, Southwark, Haringey, Hackney, Waltham Forest, Lambeth and now the City of London. Other boroughs are watching the City’s decision. More are expected to announce their own borough-wide 20mph limits soon.

This vote confirms the City’s move to borough-wide 20mph limits which will be highly cost effective. A relatively small investment in signage is predicted to reap road casualty savings of 9 per cent per year. Campaigners now hope it will send a message to the rest of the UK that a 20mph environment would encourage active travel and health, as well as providing better road safety. This vote sends a huge message to London and other global centres about the City’s aim to maintain its position in the top rank of global financial centres by prioritising road safety. Campaigners say that a 20mph limit creates an environment that encourages active travel and health through walking and cycling.

Jeremy Leach, ‘20’s Plenty for Us’ London Co-ordinator said: “A 20mph City of London says strongly that 20’s Plenty where people work. The City of London joins Paris and Tokyo in recognising that 20mph limits are better for business and health”. Rod King MBE ‘20’s Plenty for Us’ founder said: “The City of London has chosen wisely in civilising streets for people with 20mph limits. This highlights the need for our ‘It’s Time For 20’ call for a review of signage requirements to enable it to be far cheaper for local authorities to implement 20mph limits.” Time for 20 asks the Department for Transport to allow authorities to sign exceptions to 20mph limits which can halve the cost of implementing 20mph limits. Transport charity, ‘Sustrans’ London deputy director, Matt Winfield, said: ‘A 20mph limit is welcome wherever it is put in place across the country, but a postcode lottery where pedestrians and cyclists are safer in some areas than others is not acceptable – 20mph must become a national default speed limit.’
Author- TaxiCabNews



Seriously injured cyclist warns others – Don’t run a Red light

Craig Dortkamp, an ‘experienced’ cyclist, had never encountered any problems with other road users or suffered any accidents. Or so he says! But that all changed when Craig cycled through a red light in the City of London – suffering serious injuries as a result.

Reflecting on his experience, Craig said: “It’s so easy not to consider the consequences, but I don’t think I will ever go through a red light again.” On 17th May, Craig was cycling to work during rush hour traffic at about 8am.  As Craig approached the junction of Holborn Circus the traffic lights were showing red indicating for him to stop. He failed to stop at the red light and as a result found himself in the middle of a busy junction with cars travelling in all different directions. As he struggled to get out of the way of oncoming traffic he cycled into a taxi.

Craig, who was not wearing a helmet, crashed into the side of a taxi and his head went through the side window smashing the glass completely. He sustained a serious cut to his head which went down to the bone.  He required surgery and over 200 stitches. He also suffered smaller cuts to his face, two black eyes and bruising to his neck.

He hopes that by publicising his experience it will encourage other cyclists to stop, think and not to go through red traffic lights. Craig offered advice to other cyclists: “Be sensible, don’t take unnecessary risks, don’t run through a red light – you don’t know what is around the corner. I hope I don’t see any other cyclists running through a red light. If you don’t take that risk your chances of being hit by a vehicle are much slimmer and you probably won’t end up with scars on your face for the rest of your life like me.” 

Between April 2012 and March 2013 145 cyclists were injured in the City, 21 seriously. Cyclists caught going through a red light will be issued a Fixed Penalty Notice which carries a £30 fine.  Last year over 3,000 fines were given to cyclists for traffic offences in the Square Mile. Of these, nine out of 10 were issued to cyclists who went through a red light.