Cyclist On Boris Bike Dies Following Collision

Photo / Terry Moran

Photo / Terry Moran

Sad news from last night: a cyclist has died after being hit by a truck at the junction of Commercial Street and Whitechapel Road in east London. The victim, understood to be a 20-year old woman, was riding a Barclays Cycle Hire bike at the time, marking the first fatality since the programme was introduced nearly three years ago.

The accident happened outside Aldgate East Tube station. The cyclist was travelling along Cycle Superhighway 2, which runs from Aldgate to Bow. In 2011 two cyclists were killed in the space of a month on CS2, near the troublesome junction at Bow flyover; Transport for London has since unveiled plans to redesign cycling facilities at the flyover, but another death on the same route will only bring further attention on the entire Cycle Superhighways project, which has been criticised for being confusing and inconsistent.

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  • JCyclist

    Very sad, I was knocked down by an hgv while cycling a boris bike last year, I was dragged along the road for several metres, the only thing that stopped me from being crushed to death was the fact the bike became attached to the chassis. The driver stopped long enough for someone to pull me out and lie me on the pavement. As I lay there and waited for an ambulance the lorry drove away and to date the met have not been able to locate the driver or prosecute anyone. This happened in russell square in morning rush hour. It makes me sick to think that lorry drivers in London seem to have a complete disregard for cyclists and other road users. This driver nearly took my life and just drive off with no consequences, he didn’t even check to see if I was ok (which I clearly wasn’t). The met confirmed that I had been in the correct position on the road and that the lorry had been driving recklessly, so no matter how safe cyclists think they are, if there are reckless drivers out there who are not being held accountable for their actions, then cyclists don’t stand a chance. Since my accident I’ve read about the poor girl in Victoria, now this girl, something really needs to be done to improve cycle safety in London before another life is lost.

  • Frogmella

    Tragic. Please don’t use this awful event for political or philosophical point-scoring (I’m specifically thinking about the ‘confusing and inconsistent’ editorial in this regard).

    • Chris Maillard

      It’s not political point-scoring, it’s practical criticism. Doesn’t matter if the bike lane system was brought in by Conservative, Labour or the Silly Party, it has to work safely, to be consistently applied and to be rigorously enforced.

      This is a terribly sad and needless death; it’s time HGV drivers (particularly the boy racers in dump trucks) were given a definite, no-quibble warning that they will be made accountable for their or their employers’ dangerous selfishness. Bikes aren’t going away; they will have to make safe allowance for them or be forced to do so.

  • Matt

    So very sad. Thoughts with friends and the family.

  • http://gplus.to/casalotti Andrea Casalotti

    Please Londonist, don’t follow the stupid British media by calling the killing of a vulnerable road user, “death following collision”.

    Someone has killed an innocent human being. It was not an accident, it was a killing.

    The following people are responsible for the killing:

    1. the driver of the hgv,

    2. TfL who consistently puts the convenience of drivers above the safety of pedestrians and cyclists

    3. The Police, who is reluctant to deal forcefully with dangerous drivers

    4. The Justice System, who treats killers on motor vehicle extremely leniently.

    5. The media, who consistently demonises people riding bicycles

    This is #NastyBritain at its worst, and I hope that the Londonist does not join in this murderous war on pedestrians and cyclists.

    • Ken Pork

      Er unless you actually witnessed this I suggest you get down off your high horse cowboy:
      1. The driver was not arrested which suggests it was an accident.
      2. Therefore until the inquest you don’t know who is to blame it may have been the cyclist. Who knows?
      3. This wasn’t a “killing”"it was an accident.

      Tragic story. A life was lost and yes lots could be done to improve safety for cyclists. Chief among those is educating cyclists about their road behaviour as well of that of drivers.

      I’m a cyclist in London and the amount of cyclists who weave through and cut up traffic without looking, who consistently ride through red lights and who aggressively barge into pedestrians is incredible.

      The other thing that hasn’t been considered is the subject of pedestals. I am always amazed how many pedestrians walk into the path of cyclists. How do you know the cyclist wasn’t trying to avoid a pedestrian and accidentally manoeuvred in from of the lorry?

      Get your facts straight before you rant matey.

      • http://gplus.to/casalotti Andrea Casalotti

        Thank you for writing another chapter in the obscene book of #NastyBritain, a country where victims are blamed for the killings by idiotic drivers.

        • Ken Pork

          I refer you to my previous point:

          - not all drivers are idiotic

          - not all cyclists are blameless

          Balance dude, balance.

          #nothingisblackandwhite
          #you’rewelcome

        • Ken Pork

          p.s. I’m a cyclist not a driver
          #readitproperly

          • Gordon Joly

            My guess is that greater road safety is promoted by people who are pedestrians, cyclists, motor cyclists, car drivers, Transit van drivers, Luton Van drivers and drivers of 7.5 tonnes lorries. I claim to be in all classes.

            I also wonder, since I am 57, how many people have taken some sort of cycle training? I took “Cycling Proficiency” 40 years ago.

            Road awareness by car drivers seems to be at an all time low. They don’t seem to know how to approach a cyclists, and overtake them, or pass them when they are going in opposite directions.

  • http://gplus.to/casalotti Andrea Casalotti

    If you want to read a detailed analysis of the conditions that cyclists are expected to put up with in #NastyBritain, this is from star blogger Danny Williams:

    http://cyclelondoncity.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/second-cyclist-killed-on-cycle-super.html