One of the more interesting local health and safety-related news recently was the news that the creation of a new cycling “superhighway” in Edinburgh was approved in principle last week. The plan at the moment is to create a 2.5 mile cycle superhighway across Edinburgh. Effectively, that would mean creating a segregated cycle lane for cyclists to ensure greater safety and protection from other road users. There is some ongoing debate about the appropriate route that the superhighway should cover and that requires to be resolved satisfactorily after further consultation with interested parties. Leaving the details of the plan aside for the time being given that there will need to be further consultation and discussion, this should be welcomed by all road safety campaigners and personal injury lawyers.
Anything that will help improve the safety of cyclists should be supported and considered. It is well-known that Thompsons have campaigned for greater safety for cyclists through our high-profile work for victims of injuries caused by tram lines and our calls on the Government to introduce presumed liability in cycling cases. According to Sustrans, we are not alone in our thinking with 8 out of 10 people supporting the increase of safety of cycling. Despite that, only just over half of people think Edinburgh is a good place to ride a bike overall. Surely then we need to be improving that statistic and this superhighway may just be the way to do that. This is not a particularly ground-breaking idea as there are superhighways in London and across Europe. Due to recent increased budget investment in Edinburgh, the number of cyclists has increased and naturally, therefore, there is a need for greater protection of them. Despite increased investment, according to Sustrans, 74% of people want to see more spent on cycling. The Council has a chance to address that overwhelming desire through the creation of this superhighway.
Combined with the recent introduction of a 20mph speed limit which will mean that 77% of Edinburgh’s streets are limited to 20mph, safety should surely increase and accidents decrease as a result. It is a positive thing to witness and congratulations should go to those involved, but this should not be the end! There needs to be further improvement and continued investment to help protect cyclists. Only time will tell now whether that is forthcoming…
If you have been injured in an accident whilst on your bike, Talk to Thompsons on 0800 0891 331.
Blog by Ross Waddell