Bikes Could Be Allowed to Run Reds

Left turning goods vehicles seen to be biggest risk

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Transport for London are considering proposals which may allow cyclists, in certain circumstances, to cross through a red traffic light.

The move is in response to figures which show that the biggest risk to cyclists is being crushed by heavy goods vehicles which are turning left at a road junction. Allowing cyclist to turn left at lights would enable them to move clear of danger.

In 2008 13 cyclists were killed on London roads, nine of which were in collision with heavy goods vehicles. So far this year all four cyclists killed were victims of HGVs.

Cycling groups have welcomed the proposals provided they can be done whilst at the same time not compromising the needs of pedestrians.

A TfL spokesman is quoted as saying "We are looking at the possibility of allowing cyclists to turn left through a red traffic signal while general traffic remains stationary, which could potentially reduce the number of collisions involving cyclists struck by other vehicles turning left."

There have been similar schemes already trialled in Strasbourg and Bordeaux and TfL will be reviewing the outcome.

The plan is part of a £111m scheme to improve conditions for cycling in London.

The Department of Transport say a change of legislation would be needed. At the moment cyclists are liable to a £30 fine if they run a red light. TfL has not yet submitted its proposal to the Department of Transport.

April 19, 2009