Cycle safely | Transport for London educational video

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2006年に今のアパートに引っ越してきてから、日本人から譲ってもらったママチャリのお世話になっている。前のアパートはバス停もエンジェル駅も近かったが、今のアパートは部屋が広くなった代わりに交通の便が少し悪くなった。でも買い物やジム、バス停やチューブの駅も自転車で10分以内、この自転車のおかげで、行動範囲が狭くならずにすんだ。

現在、ロンドンでは1日54万5千以上の自転車利用があり、環境に優しく、健康にもいい、不況で交通費の節約等、いろいろな理由で自転車の利用は2000年より91%増加したという。自らも自転車通勤するボリス・ジョンソン市長も、自転車推進派で、現在パリのヴェリブのようなレンタル自転車システムを企画中だ。ただ、オランダや北欧など自転車先進国に比べて、自転車専用レーンは整っておらず、利用増加に伴い、交通事故も増えている。特に、ダンプカー等大型車との接触事故での死亡が、今年度ロンドン市内で6件起きていることから、ロンドンの交通システムを統括するTransport for London(TFL)はCycle safelyというサイトを開設、今月16日より大型車との接触事故予防キャンペーンを開始し、啓蒙ビデオを作製して、14万人の自転車利用者にそのリンクをメールした。TFLによると、男性に比べて律儀に信号を守る傾向のある女性が、赤信号で停車中の大型車の死角にいて、左折する車に巻き込まれるというケースが多い。この啓蒙ビデオによると、もし大型車のサイドミラーに自分自身が見えない場合はドライバーにも見えていない、赤信号停車中の大型車を左側から追い越さない、赤信号中はドライバーから見えるよう、大型車の十分前にいる事が大事だと言う。私自身も、家の近くの交通量が多い道路で、左折中のトラックに自転車が巻き込まれたのを見た事がある。幸い、自転車の前輪がぐにゃっと曲がっただけで大事はなかったが、かなりショッキングな光景だった。

ロンドンは、ママチャリがメインの日本と違って、ロードレース用等の早く走れる自転車がメイン(しかも値段も高い)。ヘルメットはもちろん、自転車レース用のピチッとしたこっぱずかしいパンツ姿も良く見かける。高速走行や信号無視など無茶する人も多くて、歩行者と車の運転手からの評判はよろしくない。事故の際は車の運転手の非が咎められがちだが、自転車利用者も注意すべき点、反省すべき点は多々あると思う。

I have been using a bicycle since we moved in to this flat/apartment in 2006. In compare to our old apartment where everything was in a walking distance, the current place is more spacious but less convenient to go out and do some chores.  But with my beloved bike, I can get to a bus stop, Tube station, gym, and shopping area within 10 minutes ride.

Currently there are more than 545,000 cycle journeys made everyday in London, 91 % increase since 2000, for several reasons such as ecological concern, healthy lifestyle, or economical reason to cut transportation cost. London mayor Boris Johnson, who is a cyclist himself, has been promoting bicycle use and planning public bicycle rental program like Paris’ Vélib’ for the capital. But bicycle lanes here are not as good as Netherlands or Scandinavian countries where bicycle is a part of their lifestyle, and the number of traffic accidents with bicycles has been increasing as more cyclists hit the roads – especially collisions with trucks/lorries which have killed 6 cyclists this year. Therefore, Transport for London (TFL) set up a website called ‘Cycle safely‘, and from July 16, it started a campaign to educate cyclists on how to avoid being crushed by HGVs turning left, and e-mailed a link to an online safety video to 140,000 cyclists. According to TFL study, women are more likely to be killed by a truck because they tend to obey red lights, unlike men,  and wait at junctions in the driver’s blind spot.

The tips in the video are
  • If you can’t see vehicle’s mirrors, the driver probably can’t see you
  • Avoid passing trucks on their left-hand side, especially with red light
  • be far enough ahead of a stationary HGV so that the driver can see you
I saw myself a cyclist tried to surpass a track and hit by the truck turning left, on the busy road nearby my house. It was not serious and the cyclist was fine and just a front tyre of the bike was bended, but it was shocking enough for me to be aware of the danger. The drivers are the one to be criticized when an accident happens, but in many cases cyclists are to be blamed. Many bicycles in London are a racing upright bicycle type (and many cyclists dress like a road racer with embarrassing tight pants and helmets), unlike Japan where city cycles are popular. Unfortunately cyclists here have a bad reputation among both pedestrians and car drivers with their ‘obnoxious’ and ‘arrogant’ attitudes (going fast, ignoring signals, no respect to others etc), due to some bad-mannered cyclists. Hope TFL website would help to improve the cyclists’ manner as well…

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2 responses to “Cycle safely | Transport for London educational video

  1. Pingback: The Times “Save Our Cyclists” Campaign | everydaylife.style

  2. Pingback: Mayor Boris Johnson and TfL Launch New “Cycle Safety” campaign « everydaylife.style

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