Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Cyclist killer to stand trial

Last year I reported on the death of a cyclist at the hands of a lorry driver which took place near to where I work in south London. I reflected on the near misses that I saw daily in Shepherd's Bush, especially when cyclists seemed to take risks on the approach to the Holland Park roundabout. Lots of you had thoughts about this too.

As the wheels of British justice drag along, interminably slowly, the trial of the cement truck driver who killed cyclist Catriona Patel is getting underway. He has admitted careless driving - he was talking on his mobile phone at the time - but the prosecution want to put him on trial for the more serious charge of dangerous driving.

I still think there is a real danger to cyclists in Shepherd's Bush. Having only been back in the UK a couple of days I've already seen a couple of them dice with death on the Askew and Uxbridge Roads, and this may be part of the reason why cyclists seem to be very unpopular in our part of west London - it might be that it's just too dangerous for them to be on the roads all of the time, hence their riding on pavements. Who knows, but either way I have a sinking feeling we might be just waiting for the next tragedy to happen on our very own roads. It's just over a year to the day that an almost identical accident happenned on the lethal Askew Road/Uxbridge/Old Oak Road Junction.

Mayor Boris Johnson launched the new "Super highway" scheme for cyclists in London recently, which seems to consist of nothing more than blue painting on bits of road. As you'll see from this video launched by the London Cycling Campaign drivers of cars seem not to care very much about what colour the tarmac is.


  1. Chris are you a cyclist out of interest? I've been cycling on our roads for most of my 33 years. It's not as dangerous as non-cyclists perceive generally, hence my question.

    You do have to take care to avoid some spots - take the cycle route that avoids Shepherds Bush Green for example.

    One of the few good things the council has done is invest a bit in cycling paths in the early 90s. These aren't bad but could be more extensive, but it does mean that in patches we're a little better than the rest of London (Hounslow for example who couldn't give a flying f*ck about cycling)

    Good map of cycling here for reference.
    A lot of people go round the Green and aren't aware of the alternatives. This link might help.

  2. Hello! Yes, I am although a fair weather one and only very local. I would be a more committed one but for the dangers on the roads - which I accept is a subjective judgement. And thanks for the map!